Maaike Schoorel at Marc Foxx

ms_2016_stone and flowers

Artist: Maaike Schoorel

Exhibition title: Gradient

Venue: Marc Foxx, Los Angeles, US

Date: May 14 – June 18, 2016

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Marc Foxx, Los Angeles

MARC FOXX is pleased to present Gradient, an exhibition of new work by Dutch-based artist Maaike Schoorel.

Maaike Schoorel is internationally known and admired for her atmospheric paintings which utilize scientific and phenomenological principals of perception. The Amsterdam-based painter has studied the writings of neuroscientists V.S. Ramachandran and Erik Scherder and included their research into building her contemplative painting project.

Schoorel’s paintings incorporate scenes from her intimate life in relationship to the historical precedents of still life, portraiture and landscape. In 2015, Schoorel was awarded the residency at The American Academy in Rome, where she made the paintings on view. As usual in her practice, Schoorel employed photographs of her day-to-day experience to compose the exhibition’s body of work.

The exhibition’s title, Gradient, refers to many aspects of the exhibition; the palettes’ tones and shades, the scale of works from small to large, and the atmosphere of the works on exhibition in addition to referring to a musical scoring.

Schoorel began her practice making very fugitive light/white compositions. Over time, she moved the work to dark/black, and to the many shades and tints in between. She began the Gradient project with the intention of specifically building the exhibition from small to large and white to black, day to night.

Schoorel’s paintings are time-based, and the viewer’s visual commitment is necessary to complete the incantation. Her precise, layered compositions are carefully built and require time for the eye and brain to acclimate and reveal the compositions, which slowly emerge from the surface. The artist never describes forms in full, but instead extracts essential visual qualities and lays in vital additions imbued with movement and physicality. Schoorel has said of her work “ …it’s not about the emulation of something” … “the image is just a reference point.”

“We gain in Schoorel’s paintings environments in which complexity and ambiguity are valued. We gain insight into the speed with which our brains naturally come to terms with sense and absence. And we gain what Schoorel works with us to create through layer upon layer of ground and color: a “new sense of space.”
– Jens Hoffmann

Schoorel is currently included in The Future is Already Here––It’s Just Not Evenly Distributed, 20th Biennale of Sydney, curated by Stephanie Rosenthal, and was recently featured in the exhibition Conversation Piece Part II at Fondazione Memmo in Rome. Selected solo exhibitions include Maaike Schoorel, Gemeente Museum, The Hague (2016), Conservatory at Mendes Wood, São Paulo, curated by Carolyn H. Drake (2013), and Conversation Piece IV, Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem (2012-2013). She has also participated in numerous group exhibitions including Silence Out Loud, Museum Kranenburgh, Bergen (2015), TANTRUM, Le Teinturier De Geest, Brussels, curated by Joseph Tang (2015), Salon, Kunstverein, Amsterdam (2015), How soon is now?, Manifesta Foundation, Amsterdam (2014–2015); Variations: Conversations in and Around Abstract Painting, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles (2014–2015); and Landscape: The Virtual, the Actual, the Possible?, Guangdong Times Museum Guangzhou (2014), touring to Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, The Peacock, Grazer Kunstverein, Graz (2014). Schoorel has been invited to the American Academy in Rome (2015), Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences at The Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome (2015) and the International Studio & Curatorial Program, New York (2013). Cura Books has just released Elemento, a book on the paintings made during her recent Rome residencies.





Maaike Schoorel, Washing feet, 2016

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Maaike Schoorel, Stone and flowers (Cimitero Verano), 2016


Maaike Schoorel, Mud, 2016


Maaike Schoorel, Mud, 2016

ms_2016_Fontana del Nettuno, Piazza Navona

Maaike Schoorel, Fontana del Nettuno, Piazza Navona, 2016

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Maaike Schoorel, Pim cleaning the studio, 2016

ms_2016_Reflected angel

Maaike Schoorel, Reflected angel, 2016

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Maaike Schoorel, Lily in the kitchen, 2016

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Maaike Schoorel, Lily in the kitchen, 2016


Maaike Schoorel, Self portrait in mirror, 2016


Maaike Schoorel, Self portrait in mirror, 2016 (detail)


Maaike Schoorel, Self portrait in mirror, 2016 (detail)