Exhibition Playful Vessels - June-July 2019
Johan Van Loon and Gökhan Taskin
1934 - 2020
The artist, in 2016 called, the “patriarch” of Dutch ceramics is constantly renewing his work. Johan got this very respectful epithet “patriarch” when he received the prestigious “Van Achterberg-Domhof” Award, given to a person or organization with a particular importance in the development of contemporary art in the Netherlands. Trained as textile designer in his early days, he discovered ceramics in 1958 and has since then been one of the most influential artists in this scene. His vision, his techniques resulted in dramatic non –dogmatic vessels or sculptures which liberated the traditional way of working with clay in the Netherlands. One of the techniques by which he received international fame was the folding of patches of clay which resulted in super thin, almost transparent porcelain vessels. Johan situates the origin of this extraordinary way of working, basically referring to the use of color and the forming of the structure, in weaving techniques. Van Loon’s sculptures are on display in the most prestigious art museums and platforms in Holland as the “Stedelijk Museum” in Amsterdam, the Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum and the “Kunsthal” both in Rotterdam, and many other. He had great mentors and professors in ceramics e.g. Dame Lucie Rie (UK) by whom he was trained in the art of working with porcelain. He also practised with Stig Lindberg, famous Swedish ceramicist and travelled to Finland to work with prof. Kylikki Salmenhaara in the Arabia company. From 1980 until 1997 he designed for Rosenthal AG, but also designed from 1976 until 1977 for Royal Copenhagen Porcelain. It made him internationally renowned. In the meantime he ran his own studio and taught ceramics in the St.Joost Academy in Breda.
“I will never stop to use all kinds of techniques”, Johan Van Loon says”, that have to do with shape, color and structure. Starting point is myself and my way of working.”