Elena Beelaerts Fellowship
Elena Beelaerts
Stanley Picker Fellow
1997

Dissecting is central to my art. How do organisms work? How do they relate to their surroundings? I open them up as in forensics; turn them inside out, as a scientist on a quest for kinship in life forms. Humans shape shift into plants, dogs, amoebas. My work shows evolutionary biology run wild, reversed, perverted.

Drawing is always my starting point. My installations too can be seen as spatial drawings. Studies of bones and flesh as well as physiological processes in cells then are subjected to associative jumps that may seem arbitrary but have an autobiographical basis. Also scalpel and saw can serve as pencils, when I cut bits from photocopies, magazines, drawings and glue them in. Nature enjoys every haphazard meeting that functions, if only barely – so do I.

All of this is an attempt to look through the threateningly autonomous processes of the body, to ward off fears of disease, violence, decay. To ease the human condition.
Sometimes the work stays on paper. But I may put it between sheets of glass, as in a microscopic preparation, to achieve yet another kind of transparency.

I want to suck the viewer into a world full of biomorphic associations, alienation, and fear of contamination, wonder and lust: the world of a curiously happy hypochondriac

selected exhibitions
2006 The Drawing Centre, New York; Clementine Gallery, New York
2005 Galerie Tanya Rumpf, Haarlem; Follie commission for Den Haag Sculptuur, The Hague
2004 Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amsterdam

www.elenabeelaerts.nl

Above image: Defecating Dog Stanley Picker Gallery Collection