Drawing, meticulously staged photographs, sculptures and video are part of the wide range of practices in the works of Sylvie Zijlmans (Geertruidenberg NL, 1964) and Hewald Jongenelis (Etten-Leur NL, 1962). Since the beginnings their work is based on questioning our society.
Their recent dynamic drawings spur people up to take action and look differently to today political and social issues. The drawings result from the overwhelming theatrical installation ‘The Magnetic North & The Idea of Freedom’(2017) shown at Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in which local issues of a Dutch subburb are connected with bigger themes such as the experience of individual liberty and the current refugee crisis. They thus turned everyday life of an expanding city into a metaphor for our time.
The earlier photographs are based on incidents that bring disruption to many people’s lives. Dramas of devastation and destruction relating to today’s political and economic crisis, reduced to a human scale. Leaking ceilings, flooded interiors, mould-encrusted walls, collapsing homes. Among all this chaos, Zijlmans & Jongenelis present us with images that envision new possibilities and shapes a new order.