24 June 2019
The Artistic Path of Rafael Von Streepen
This article was originally published on Hue & Eye.
About Rafael Van Streepen
Dutch-born, Canadian raised Rafael Van Streepen (b. 1991), is a young painter currently based in Amsterdam. We met him during the opening launch of the cultural collaboration between St-Art Amsterdam and the Wheelhouse on June 14th, 2019 @wheelhose Amsterdam, as he is one of the artists part of the long-run exhibition inside the venue.
As we sat down ready to begin a conversation about his practice, Rafael chose to initially talk about what art has always been for him. Coming from an academic background in Economics, Rafael soon felt the urge of exploring his approach to life through his own actions, finding in the artistic one an essential technique. At the age of 21, he opened a gallery space in Amsterdam, where artists could be supported in their journey. In those years he was himself helped to produce more artwork by his good friend Noah Lamp, an artist with a deepened academic art education which stimulated Rafael to explore his own artistic workflow. This was a turning point in Rafael’s life. As he had to interrupt the gallery in Amsterdam, he went back to New York to his mother where he continued following his artistic research.
About His Work
When asked about his paintings, Rafael stands out the importance of the playful path an artist has to carry on with. In his opinion, the artistic workflow is used as a metaphor to search inside oneself and to explore any boundaries without judgment.
His work appears as abstract as a raw emotion, where colors are twisted into shapes to recall the human feeling of searching and exploring for something energetic. Rafael indeed sees colors as powerful tools to experiment with, with the same innocence as a child would do. This is to him an attempt to revoke that pure self one will forget of while moving forward in the journey into life.
As a young and sensitive man, Rafael aims to support the contemporary art world by encouraging artists in their production, the main reason why he sees st-Art as a valid evolving point for his own personal path.
Today there is such a variety of different artists in the visual art scenery, so many diverse personalities with their own complexity, all bringing different attributes and expression to the art world. The ones I love the most are those who above all designate knowledge and experimentation as the main guideline for their artistic development. […]
Shahina Jaffer is not only a fine and developed artist, but an intellectual and active person towards the social and cultural scene. She considers art sort of a universal language and she has the courage and audacity to transfer that in her style. The result is an extremely pathological and emotional style, abstract and subjective, […]
‘Luna de Jesus Licea is not only an extremely talented artist, but a very interesting and articulated personality. He reminds me so much of the artists from the 80s and their approach to art with no barriers and no conditions. Luna considers art his safe place from reality and his possibility to express himself in […]