“I like to take an existing image as a point of departure for my work. That means there’s always another maker involved. (…) To me, an image in a book or on a screen is part of the physical reality we create and surround ourselves with. I use the time I spend in my studio to look at these images and digest them.”
About the artist
Central to the practice of Marijn van Kreij is an idiosyncratic process of appropriation and repetition. Focussing on the creative act itself and the combination of image and language his work is made manifest through drawings, paintings, collages, (sound) objects, slide projections and videos, that are brought together in carefully composed exhibitions – in which he regularly involves other artists, writers or musicians.
An essential body of work in Van Kreij‘s meandering oeuvre are his modest sized drawings and collages: manually copied artworks or children book illustrations are combined with cut-out bits of texts, or loosely painted brushstrokes are applied directly on pages from art catalogues or magazines. As Steven ten Thije wrote in his essay Range Anxiety, the simplicity of these works is deceptive, as their ‘haphazard appearance is the careful outcome of a concentrated process of looking, thinking and feeling’. Language and image, figuration and abstraction are combined into ‘miniature visual poems that open up a special imaginative space in the mind of the viewer’.
“The potential clatter, as well as the borrowed and invented phrases or would-be aphorisms that populate many of his drawings, indicate his interest in facilitating outside incursions into his visual art practice. This is a stance counter to notions of art as some kind of sanctified realm.” Camila McHugh, 2022
Nude in the Studio, 2018Spiral bound postcard book published on the occasion of the exhibition Nude in the Studio at Marres, Maastricht. Design: Akiko Wakabayashi.
Reclining Nude with a Man Playing the Guitar, 2016Published as part of the ABN AMRO Art Award 2016 and accompanying the exhibition at the Hermitage Amsterdam, this artist book brings together all ‘Picasso grids’ to date and incorporates contributions by Nickel van Duijvenboden, Bettina Funcke and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy & The Cairo Gang. Design: Irma Boom Office, Irma Boom and Akiko Wakabayashi Selected for The Best Dutch Book Designs, 2016
How to Look Out, 2011Artist book as well as catalogue published to accompany the exhibition How to Look Out at De Hallen Haarlem. With an interview by Nickel van Duijvenboden and an essay by Xander Karskens.
The Passenger, 2011Published on the occasion of the exhibition "The Passenger" at Galerie Paul Andriesse, Amsterdam.
O Let It Be, 2008Artist book with drawings, photographs and collages, published as part of the Uriot Prize 2006 Editing and design in collaboration with Adriaan Mellegers. Selected for The Best Dutch Book Designs, 2008