Meest recente werk > 2014 / Pagina 4
 
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Dear visitor: Due to the native language of the designing artist Nils Norman and the international character of this project, the accompanying text in the following two pages will exceptionally be written in English:

The picture below shows the bridge at the beginning of the project: An ugly old concrete kind of bunker between two green areas acting as an obstacle rather than an invitation to pass through... till Nils Norman solved the problem artistically creating a wonderful design for a set of murals to be painted on both inner side walls. The intellectual work has been done, the artistic concept is there, now let's execute this project...



...and these are (once again) the two designs I received from Nils to be painted on the right hand and left hand sides of the inner walls of the bridge. If you would like to know more about the artist's motivation and the story behind this project, check this video-interview with Nils Norman on youtube: http://youtu.be/YsN8XQ87G4A...





First step: Cleaning the bridge and renovation painting work... what a difference already!



Images above and below: The cleaning and painting was done by a local company: A.S.L.V., based in the town of As, Belgium and as you can see they did a very neat, clean and thorough job... This industrial painting company also acts as the general contractor for the project and the art studio VAN HOEF will concentrate on the murals themselves which proves to be a fine combination of different craftsmen with specific individual skills needed to bring the project altogether to a successful end...



...and then it's time for Eddie Van Hoef to do his job but first of all: Inform the public of what is happening here. The Dutch text means: "work of art in progress". This is one huge wall and there's two of them so let's not waste any more time...



...but before that both the executing artist and the artistically responsible designing artist insisted on arranging a meeting on site: An ideal opportunity also to talk through the project personally before starting. After an animated nice chat I had the impression we were in for a good cooperation and I think Nils felt pretty confident about leaving his new born child in my hands. For me personally I couldn't wait to realize his design. For a professional applied arts artist painter this project is like a gift: The drawings are very nice, the monochrome approach, the graphic aspect and besides the challenge of transferring this graphic aspect into a hand-painted mural it will also be a pleasure just to paint every large or little bit of this work itself! I really like what Nils did with the Léon Becker drawings, how he rearranged them and brought them together in this new configuration, the composition is extremely well balanced and besides all these formal and esthetic qualities the image as a whole is very accessible for young and old, and there is more than meets the eye: If the public wants to make the effort the underlying stories and meanings are very readable without the need for extra assistance, a special dictionary or explanations by connoisseurs...



Image above: The executing artist painter Eddie Van Hoef and the artist Nils Norman meeting on site for the first time and vice-versa. Below: The first drawings are being made. For this project Eddie Van Hoef prefers the old-fashioned way of enlarging the original designs drawing them to scale by hand directly on the wall rather than using projectors or other complicated devices: This is just the faster, less complicated, more precise and better way of executing this type of drawings. Using stepladders instead of scaffoldings is a motivated choice too: The ladders never really block a clear view on the whole and they are much easier to move around with when you want them out of the way when needed as well...



...and when the drawings of the first wall are ready the actual painting begins: The stepladders grow larger and a fence has been installed... because while the artist was away somebody has already - out of pure innocent curiosity I suppose - tried to check if the pencil drawings would come off if you rubbed the surface! Anyway: The first strokes of paint are just temporary try-outs to get to know the material: A thick silicate based mineral outdoor wall paint that is. They also help you understand the specific behaviour of this paint in all it's aspects, it's drying time, covering capabilities, mechanical behaviour, manipulating possibilities etc... In this case the try-outs are just fine and they can stay as they are and furthermore they helped the artist to decide which technical procedure will be the best for this specific mural...



...and that procedure will be to work with 5 different shades of gray, first blocking in the silhouettes with the darker colours, working on top of that with the lighter grays and finishing off bringing some extra details with the darkest close to black gray. The variations in brushwork will give the more or less graphic effect needed for the specific element you're working on at the time. Fast and accurate brushstrokes work best to emphasize the typical pictorial qualities of hand painted work. Most of the elements will be handled this way but some of the larger kind of stand-alone parts of the mural (the giant foot, the hand with the pointing finger, the mother ladybug, the blown-up sketch saying "image" etc...) have a larger surface and therefore will need special attention and a different technical approach...


Photo made by Kristof Vrancken, Z33

Image above: Emphasizing a graphic aspect through animated quick brushstrokes. Below: The finished detail...



...and the work continues...


Photos made by Kristof Vrancken, Z33

Above: These Kristof Vrancken photos were taken with an interval of several weeks and give a nice impression of the size of the mural: Left: At the very beginning of the project. Right: About two weeks later near completion of the first wall. The next pictures further down were all taken during that period...



Above: Painting some adjustments standing on ground level while the protecting fence has temporarily been moved. Below: Some close-up details showing the various solutions and procedures that were used to generate a "painted" graphic effect...




...and some other pictures just for the fun of it...




...and after I had written the bedtime story in the book and during my "balancing act" looking a lot like one of the dancing insects I received an answer from Nils on my smartphone saying: "The pictures you sent me are great, I don't think you could have done a better job, I am delighted with the result", so I proudly take another picture just for fun...



...so feeling quite confident I continue... The French text means: "moved out due to destruction"...



...and every other 10 to 15 meters of finished paintwork the guys of the A.S.L.V. painting company arrive at the scene to apply the two coats of the anti-graffiti treatment, what a fine and reassuring cooperation this is...



...and finally one day the first 175 square meters wall is almost done...


Photo made by Kristof Vrancken, Z33

Time to move everything to the other side of the road now and continue the work on the second wall. This time however - because of the extra height of the right hand corner - I will need a scaffold just for one day... and the A.S.L.V. guys once again take care of it...



...and finally some nice shots of the finished first mural seen from different positions...





Go to the next page to see the further evolution of this project...


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