Drawing forms the basis for all of Dirk Zoete’s work. Starting from drawings, he makes models, sculptures, architectural constructions, photos, films and also new drawings. At S.M.A.K. he is showing new and recent work in a varying display that is midway between an exhibition and a temporary artist’s studio.
Dirk Zoete stages his imagination. He presents his conceptual models concerning man and the world on platforms and in stage sets that form part of his work. He directs variable scenes with a slightly absurd company of characters, animals and their props. In both his drawings and his spatial works, the emphasis is on the surface: the figures are flat and schematic and populate frontal spaces. They function as signs in Zoete’s playful artistic language.
The form of Dirk Zoete’s spaces and characters is reminiscent of the revolutionary stage sets and costumes of the German Bauhaus and Russian Constructivism at the beginning of the 20th century. Except that his figures display a more human, almost melancholy nature. Some remind us of the later portraits of farmers by the painter Kazimir Malevich. This is no coincidence, as Zoete is from a farming family. In his creations, the farming occupation is intimated by his choice of both images and materials.
Dirk Zoete (1969, Roeselare) lives and works in Ghent. He regularly exhibits in Belgium and abroad, but is also actively involved in Flanders’ experimental artist’s workspaces. To be determined. According to the situation is his first major solo exhibition in a Belgian museum.