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Helmut Stallaerts

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Man is undoubtedly the central motif in Helmut Stallaerts’ complex and broad oeuvre. It is not man in the here and now, but alienated man, blurred and absent. In a rather theatrical and often awkward way, he shows himself, poses for his audience. The actions he undertakes frequently smack of an undefined ritual. There is nothing comical about the absurd atmosphere created in this way; on the contrary, it is very strange and dark. The environment by which his human existence is framed is similarly alien: without any anecdotal detail, sterile and cold.
The obsessive aesthetics that Stallaerts develops in his oeuvre creates a sacred dimension through which the works always relate to one another. This context creates a core around which all his works circulate. This enigmatic core, however, remains open: one can merely get closer to it, but never actually reach it. An exhibition by Helmut Stallaerts has the power to generate a view on the mysteries of being; it also confronts us with a truth that remains dark and that unhinges our own fictive truths.

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