Roel van Timmeren has his roots in painting. Painting enables him to critically question the world around him and relate to the "global village" and our fully mediated, standardized society. Moreover he considers his drawings, sculptures, videos and site-specific installations a form of painting as well. Whatever medium he works with, Van Timmeren tries to open up an intermediate dimension where the magical things occur which have no place in the prevailing worldview.

Over a decade long Van Timmeren has worked in nearly monk-like circumstances on what he describes as 'insignificant images’, which means self-contained images with as little significance as possible and the highest possible content in form and colour, but since 2002 he has sought out collaboration with other artists, urban designers and scientists. In this way he could disrupt his own way of working, communicate with colleagues as well as the public and achieve a result that would transcend his individual perspective and generate discussion. With temporary interventions in public space, he has applied painterly principles in a narrative and audience-oriented way and shifted the emphasis from things that are overtly meaningful to something that is (almost) invisible yet anything but insignificant.

Back in the studio, Van Timmeren has been processing his 'fieldwork' of more than fifteen years in compositions that seem to fit in with geometric abstract art of the twentieth century. They have an architectural quality, and at the same time are reminiscent of scientific graphs or technological systems. But once again, this first impression distracts from what still concerns him: elude reality. In the twenty-first century escape routes to other dimensions are even harder to find than before.

Els Hoek 

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