Ronald van den Boogard takes on Paper Pairs

Mixed Media
30 cm x 40 cm
Ronald van den Boogard, 2017
Early spring. Wednesday morning 7.23. There is a loud banging on my door. Sleep-drunk, I worked late the night before with the companionship of 47 Monkeys and a fever tree, G&T, I open the door. A bewildered Ebba Jahn is there with a request. Would I participate in a group show in Berlin?

This off course did not happen. She just sent me an email, but as this article is totally void of any drama, it seemed a good idea to add some.
The request was simple. Make two abstract works on paper of 40 x 30 centimeters which are a pair.

Very seldom do I do requests or abstracts. Ms. Jahn had seen some elements in my representational work that by itself are abstract. This observation turned the question into a challenge.

Size is undisputed and despite the fact I could bore you to death with the differences, weights, manufacturing methods, feel and so forth of paper, it is singular: paper in the end is just that. Not hard to get either.
Remain the real challenges: abstracts and pairing two works.

The Refuge
Mixed Media
30 cm x 40 cm
Ronald van den Boogaard, 2017

The most common definition of abstract is: my X-year old can do this. Where X is any number between two and six. There are many others, but the simplest is off course that abstract art is void of any representation. From here it leads to many -isms and other sub divisions. Recently I heard the term meditational abstracts, which was new to me.

I had not done any abstract work for well over a decade, but I am a professional so I should be able to achieve a minimum quality. It turned out to be a lot harder than expected. The first tries were not up to my self imposed standards. The third attempt at a pair of drawings I deemed good. Later on I was told that I wasn’t the only one going through this process of failure.

What constitutes a pair? Two pieces which are similar? That would be the most obvious answer. Two opposites also make up a pair. A single piece cut in two. A question and an answer. There are numerous other possibilities.
Design by Ronald van den Boogaard

Twenty two artists from four countries were facing the same challenges. The only requirements set in stone are the size and paper. The abstract and the pairing question are answered in a multitude of techniques. Painting, drawing, collage, digital, encaustic. Each applied their own handwriting and each had their own approach to the Pair.

Couple this with a variety of backgrounds, regional, cultural and gender differences it should not come as a surprise that the “Paper Pairs” show exhibits a very wide array of solutions. Yet there is a great coherence within this diversity. A conspiracy to be similar in difference or vice versa.

The format has given me the incentive to continue with abstracts as an addition to my work and most certainly more pairs will come out of my hands. I am sure that my companions in this show will suffer similar after effects. Just as I am sure that we are all proud to be part of the “Paper Pairs”.
Design by Ronald van den Boogaard

Contact:  ron@ronvdb.com  or  info@EbbaJahn.com

 Buy Paper Pair or one at a time.