Jacqueline Dehond and Koenraad Uyttendaele both studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Since the very beginning, their artistic partnership was a natural process, becoming ever closer through the years. Their long experience in architecture, design and art projects constitute a fertile ground for the couple’s current art work, which has been presented under the name Jacqy duVal since 2010.

Abstract lyrical synthesis

Characteristic for the work of Jacqy duVal are the bold graphic structures (-the golden section, proportions, etc.-) and the time-honored methods used to embed colour, material and space into these structures. The artists investigate visual material such as form, size, colour, tone, space, light and saturation in their geometrically abstract paintings in an extremely disciplined and far-reaching manner. They create space and light where geometry (the form) and lyricism (material and colour), fuse harmoniously to form a balanced entity.

 Colour and material

The artists figure amongst those who consider colour and material as the major media of their visual language. They are interested in the effect of colours and proportions on our subconscious: an aesthetic experience that is called up by the interactive power of coloured sections that are painted to bring about their tensions as a whole.  Their work shows the traces of the Bauhaus colour masters Jozef Albers and Johannes Itten and the seductiveness of old Italian painting techniques, while using an intuitive method and  interpreting these elements in a contemporary context.

Their admiration for both the monumental abstraction in Egyptian sculpture and the age-old fresco techniques of the Italian Renaissance, Indian miniature art of painting, Islamic geometric art, the brilliant colouring of artists such as Matisse, Warhol and Basquiat or the contemplative serenity in the work of artists such as Brancusi or Morandi is reflected in their work and drives them in their intense search for quality and depth.

Creation process in dialogue

Working together is also a way to surpass their anecdotal and personal stories and to have their differences in temperament melt together, giving a more universal expression. Their creative process consists of a concept stage during which carefully considered choices are made and precisely planned; the artisanal preparation of the canvas and the formulation of the paints are based on historical recipes; followed by an evolutionary realisation stage.

This intensive working method enables the artists  to approach the creative process in a state of full concentration and commitment and, in this way, penetrate the essence.

Contemplative timbre

Jacqy duVal’s passion for historical techniques, refined geometric relationships and use of colour makes the viewer’s experience strong and aesthetic. The suggestive power that emanates from the paintings is partially achieved by the use of selected painting techniques, resulting in a powder-like texture. The material, based on a natural binding agent, gives a unique timbre which commercial paints fail to achieve.

The contemplative image of the colour-rich variations reminds the beholder of his intrinsic alliance with nature. The extremely sophisticated sobriety of Jacqy duVal’s body of work engages our emotional and intuitive powers and touches our soul as pure music or poetry.

Isabelle Vanhoonacker  Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium