With Snake Eyes, the MDD presents the abstract work of Charline von Heyl (b. 1960, Mainz) for the very first time in Belgium. Since the 1980s, this German artist, living in America, is known for her innovative, radical approach to abstract painting. Rather than abstracting the reality that surrounds us, the core of her practice stems from the images that arise during improvisation on the canvas. Her work is mainly driven by intuition - a colour, a movement, or a state of mind gives rise to powerful compositions that allow an endless number of interpretations. Contemplation and imagination are the key to her work.
The title of the exhibition immediately reveals the enigmatic tone of Charline von Heyl's painting. Snake Eyes embraces the idea of another - a free, playful and subjective - look. Like an animal, her paintings should be viewed without words. In the pictorial world of von Heyl meanings are never unambiguous, titles never ambiguous and truths are not gratuitous. With her abstract painting von Heyl wants to transcend the verbal language and seeks to give space to the imagination and especially to the emotions of the viewer. Her visually engaging paintings need time to be viewed, understood and above all to be 'absorbed'. They automatically instil a world of silence.
I am just trying to keep the paintings ahead of language. Or better yet, ahead of sentences. . . I just want to get the viewer to move past definitions and on to something more personal and fragile, a place where thoughts and feelings meet, where looking feels like thinking.
(Charline von Heyl)