Benoît Platéus is a Belgian artist born in 1972 in Chênée. He lives and works in Brussels.
Benoît Platéus uses a wide range of techniques (photography, video, drawing or sculpture) based on the observation of reality as an experimental process. Fascinated by the ambiguity of our everyday environment, he underlines its strangeness through surprising graphic treatments, based in particular on the residual content of images of very diverse origins, transformed by way of photography, photocopying, drawing or cutting.
Winner of the Prix de la Jeune Peinture Belge (2003), nominated for the Ariane de Rothschild Prize (2008), Benoît Platéus was awarded a CERA grant in 2008 as part of the “Partners in Art” programme.
Benoît Platéus’ paintings reveal an overwhelming world made of shadows and sophisticated shades, bursts of light and ghostly white forms. These are open paintings, where personal interpretation is possible: everyone will see what they want to see. As Benoît Platéus himself says:
“What interests me are the transitory states that allow all possibilities. I like it when things escape categorisation, it gives them more presence, more strength, it makes their singularity appear”.
The gaze constantly moves from the background to the foreground and back again, trying to settle somewhere. Benoît Platéus’ painting style is complex without being complicated. It is as complex as the soil itself; with its different strata, its sediments, its rare minerals, its water tables and its shifts. But there is nothing convoluted or hermetic; there are broad brushstrokes with a beautiful amplitude of gesture but also jerks and nervous touches of fine brushes. All this is given to the eye in all simplicity.
From a technical point of view, the backgrounds are of paramount importance. Very deeply developed, they allow the superimposed motifs to find a serious anchorage and to float in a controlled drift. There is mastery, but it seems to be subordinated to a great freedom, which depends on the happy accidents that define the state of progress of the painting as it goes along. If new directions are unexpectedly offered, Benoît Platéus will gladly take them. At the risk of making a mistake and having to step away from his painting, erasing everything he had started. A finished painting can change at the last moment. The forms that appear, sometimes timid, sometimes loudly asserted, come from a fertile vocabulary that faithfully accompanies the artist.
Presentation of the work exhibited in the winery
Acquisition date: January 2021
Exhibited in the distillery
The Empathic One, 2020
Oil and paper on canvas
260 x 195 cm