(1981 – )

Bastiaan van Stenis
Contemporary
Overview

van Stenis’ paintings are expressed using a diverse range of tools and mediums including paint, cloth, encaustic wax, hair, glues, and collage. His other projects include taxidermy and sculpture. van Stenis states, “What drives me is the process, the creating and the creation itself is just another stop on the way”.

His art is captivatingly unique.  His style commands the viewer’s attention, and his subject matter absorbs their interest.  The figures that are presented both explode from and dissolve into the creamy peach oranges, mint greens and Naples yellows that have become a central part of his style.

The serenity of these backgrounds contrasts with the figures and scenarios that are depicted upon them.  van Stenis’ art, inspired by the surroundings within which he exists, is saturated with layers of mixed media.  The use of alternative mediums in the works themselves takes the idea that we are a conglomeration of the influences that define us further.  The masterful manner through which he weaves his mediums together becomes significant; it represents the stitching together of the self in a dreamlike portrayal of reality.  The worlds that van Stenis creates develop with time – small details move to the fore in the viewer’s appreciation of the work.

The childlike brutality of the works evokes a deeply personal understanding of the works for the viewer.  They become a personal narrative of growing up and surviving as individuals in the complexities of social codes, expectations, and definitions of being.  van Stenis challenges this as he depicts seemingly mundane moments with a feeling of simultaneously imploding and exploding – we become what we gather and experience.  We carry memories like marks that define us.  We collect emotions, and they shape our form.  Our permanence is found in the smears that share our chosen identities.  We embrace the classicism of artistry, the modernity of texture, the protest of neo-expressionism, and the possibility of more in this style that lies beyond definition.

Biography

Born in South Africa in 1981, van Stenis, of half Dutch, half South African lineage, grew up in Cape Town. Remarkably, he is a descendant of the renowned and celebrated 19th-century English painter John Thomas Baines.

van Stenis is primarily a self-taught artist, but at a young age, he received private art tutoring and guidance.  After his schooling in 2000, he began to fully dedicate himself to painting and commenced exhibiting his work, an endeavour that he continues to this day. van Stenis currently works and resides in the Cape.

Exhibitions

2023

Optimal Vibration, Group Exhibition, Graham Contemporary, Johannesburg

Sunny Side Up, Group exhibition, Graham Contemporary, Johannesburg, South Africa

2022

Group Exhibition – “Summer Salon”, Graham Contemporary, Johannesburg

New Day, Group exhibition, Graham Contemporary, Johannesburg, South Africa

2021

Group Exhibition – Graham Modern & Contemporary, Johannesburg

2020

Group Exhibition – Graham Modern & Contemporary, Johannesburg

2019

Solo Exhibition – “Wake You Gently Singing”  Worldart Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2018

Duo Exhibition – with Ruhan Janse van Vuuren, Dawid Ras Gallery, Pretoria 

2018

Solo Exhibition – “Night time is the right time” with Kunskantoor Gallery at Rust en Vrede Gallery

2018

Solo Exhibition – “The Last Time”, Nuweland Gallery, Buren Netherlands

2018

Group Exhibition – FynArts Hermanus and Kunskantoor Gallery, Hermanus

2017

Solo Exhibition – “If there is Something”, Worldart, Cape Town, South Africa

2017

Group exhibition – FynArts, Hermanus, South Africa

2016

Solo exhibition – “Rogue”, FynArts, Hermanus, South Africa

2015

Solo Exhibition – “Oostloor Art and Objects”, Prinsengragt, Amsterdam, Netherlands

2013

Solo Exhibition – Dejavu Art Gallery, Eindhoven, Netherlands

2012

Studio Exhibition – Dusseldorf, Germany

2010

Studio Exhibition – combination of work by Bastiaan Van Stenis and Gerard Cloete

2010

Solo Exhibition – Groot Constantia, Cape Town

2009

Solo Exhibition – “Godog” Rossouw Modern Art Gallery, Groot Constantia, Cape Town

2008

Group show – Gerard Cloete Gallery, Cape Town

2007

Group Exhibition – Hout Bay Gallery, Cape Town

2006

Solo Exhibition – “Go Figure”, Gerard Cloete Gallery, Cape Town

2006

Solo Exhibition – “Red”, The Gallery, Cape Town

2005

Group Exhibition – Veo Gallery, Cape Town

2004

Solo Exhibition – “Figurescaping”, Veo Gallery, Cape Town

2003

Solo Exhibition – “Go”, Veo Gallery ,Cape  Town

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