Miko Veldkamp, a 2014-15 Hodder Fellow at the Lewis Center for the Arts, exhibits a selection of paintings he created during his Fellowship year. Passing Through the Garden State will be on display in the Lucas Gallery on the second floor at 185 Nassau Street from July 14 through July 31, 2015. Gallery hours are weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and admission is free and open to the public. A closing reception will be held on Saturday, August 1 from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Miko moved from the Netherlands to America last fall for the Fellowship, living in the Merwick Stanworth apartments at Princeton and working in a studio at the Lewis Center for the Arts.
According to Veldkamp, Princeton University represents a place of excellence, intellectual pursuit, wealth, and power, but the surroundings of New Jersey are often described as the opposite: ugly, boring, unimportant, mediocre. Yet as pure form, light, and color in a painter’s hands, there is no such thing as good or bad, pretty or ugly, and one can look without prejudice.
Passing Through the Garden State features many scenes typically associated with New Jersey: roads, cars, parking lots, but also forests and hills. The University, its unique architecture, and other scenes that make the area of Princeton famous are notedly absent from the exhibition. In his paintings, Veldkamp often omits what is central and depicts the things right before, after or outside of it. In his titles he describes the things that are invisible, intangible, or in motion to emphasize the shortcomings of the static virtual image and to draw attention to the formal object that is the painting. He connects the process of painting to the fluidity of what is depicted and connects the scale of brushstrokes and gestures to physical and emotional proximity. He uses light and color to create a sense of space, without being limited by perspective.