Skip to main content

Nathalie Vanheule

A guardian angel weapon

Nathalie Vanheule's work subscribes to vast and rich traditions in postmodern art: Belgian symbolism with its romantic élan combined with Scandinavian Utopianism result in the elaboration of a quite singular universe. The artist offers us both pictorial and performance art. Installations, photos, sculptures, drawings and wall paintings are a few of the techniques used in her creations, which are always developed in close relation with the exhibition space. Nathalie Vanheule's works take us far beyond the looking-glass.
By putting to use melodrama and the symbolical restitution of misunderstandings, she stages in her multidisciplinary way the emotions that fascinate her: regression, doubt, aggression, melancholy, the quest for protection.
Drenched in a melancholic mood reminiscent of James Ensor, Böcklin (themes such as isolation, protection, confinement, celebration), Nathalie Vanheule's work is about lost hope and emotional loss.
It unveils our suppressed and hidden desires and brings out our intimate fears into public space.  As expressions and gestures become illusions, childishness turns to nihilism and fear.
Nathalie Vanheule is taking on negations with absence.

(Agnès Violeau, May 2010, translation by Charlotte Steen)

A guardian angel weapon
Black angels are attacking the sky
Guns are shooting in my head
I will protect you
Loving you is easy
Save your smile
Save your smile for the last hour
The apocalypse twins
The cat has kitties
The man with the double face
The perfect couple
You smile while you take me
You take your smile while I take yours
Four white blankets
Gifts for free

Flanders Arts Institute

Expertise centre for performing arts, music and visual arts.