Biography




Artist biography:

Peter Weidenbaum is an established contemporary artist born in 1968, Antwerp, Belgium.

Weidenbaum's creative work was primarily influenced by the 1980s an era of developing global capitalism, political upheaval, global mass media, wealth discrepancies and unique music and fashion, characterised by hip hop and electronic pop music. This had a heavy impact on the generation of artists growing up during this decade. The fall of the Berlin Wall at the end of the 1980s marked the end of the Cold War, yet the era was also distinguished by the African Famine. During this time leading art movements included Neo Geo, The Pictures Generation and Neo-Expressionism.

In 1996, at the suggestion of artist Guillaume Bijl, Weidenbaum successfully applied for a training course at the Higher Institute for Fine Arts (HISK). His investigations into images lead to a cross-pollination between cartoon films and sculptural work. In 1999 he received an invitation from Stijn Huijts, director of the Civic Museum "Het Domein" in Sittard, The Netherlands. This results in his first museum exhibition with the installation "Somebody puts something in my dreams." During this period, Weidenbaum also produces a few "fake reality" short films in which his brother plays the lead role. After his HISK period, he works for three years on a series "Out of the Forest," a set of cryptic sculptures, drawings, and paintings. During this period, Weidenbaum strikes up a close contact with the philosopher Willem Elias, who remarks the following about the series: "Weidenbaum reflects about the world surrounding him. He takes us into the forest. No jolly walkabout but bewitched approaches confuse our sight." In his book "Aspects of Belgian art beyond ‘45", he later cites Weidenbaum under the heading of "neosymbolism," a particular style in Flanders labeled as "the school of Antwerp" and of which Luc Tuymans is the most prominent representative. Elias mentions "recontextualization" of reality and includes Weidenbaum in his book, besides the likes of Ronny Delrue and Koen van den Broek.

During the recent period, Weidenbaum painted a series of works under the heading 'Conservatory'. Paintings of a piece of protected nature. Plants in a conservatory looking, like the painter, for the light. An old grape greenhouse in Overijse or the botanical gardens in Liège, both places in Belgium, are the place of inspiration. The contrasts between the high whites and the deep blacks in this series are a direct link with the way of painting that Gustave Courbet used in his snow landscapes. The conflict between culture and nature has never played such a high game. This has brought us back to romanticism, says Weidenbaum about this series of paintings.

Weidenbaum lives and works in the province of Liège Belgium and in Hradec Králové Czech Republic. And is represented internationally by Jiri Svestka Gallery in Prague.