'Nepalese tartan', 2015, acrylic ink on cotton, woven, 195×145 cm
'Nothing but flowers 4', 2014, 150 x 105 cm
Koen Doodeman examines the surface. He feels that by acknowledging the semblance of an exterior we might break through our own assumptions or presumptions and it is at this point that we really connect with people or situations outside our own skin. This requires continuous repositioning in which Doodeman searches for moments where opposing positions become detached from their own specific context and might connect with each other. This is why the artist experiments with weaving and screen printing. The physical rhythm of these media makes him turn inward and see the remote birth of an image. He questions the difference between the image created using slow, traditional weaving and the multiple screen prints that can be produced rapidly.
The tartan in a recent work refers to the shawls of Nepalese Gurkhas, but also to Doodeman’s own scarf. They look alike, but are different, like their owners. Still, cross-references can be made, both real and fictional. The exchangeability goes beyond the surface; Gurkhas and Scots become variants in parallel histories. The shawl is a 'portal' to underlying stories, but mostly functions as a membrane on which interactions between relative extremes are left behind and become visible.