Rob de Oude lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He has been educated at the Hoge School voor de Kunsten in Amsterdam, in painting, sculpture and art history and has followed the Graduate program for painting at SUNY Purchase, NY, as part of an educational exchange program. Initiator and founding member of Camel Art Space in Brooklyn, NY, de Oude has shown in the Netherlands, France and the US and has been covered by the NY Post, L Magazine, Sculpture Magazine and Artnet Magazine and others.
NYArts Magazine review for Crisscrosses + Cross-outs at Arts and Sciences Projects, New York, NY. June 2011.
Brow undoubtedly glistening with beads of sweat as one walks down a worn, navy blue carpeted hallway on the sweltering opening night, the corner is turned to find the door to unit 409 wide open. This is Arts and Sciences Project's latest exhibition, showcasing the work of Brooklyn artist Rob de Oude. The viewer is greeted upon entering by a vibrantly pigmented wall-drawing behind five tightly hung sixteen inch square panels in white shadow box frames.
These works are joined in the gallery by more intimate drawings on paper in colored pencil, a larger painting on canvas, and a small video projection of an outdoor installation. Even in this smaller space, de Oude has a way of making what could be a bombardment of visual information quite cohesive.
Restricting himself to a linear articulation indicative of high modernism with an approach that seems to lend itself to process art and in the color palette of a young post-Ab Ex generation, Rob de Oude seems very comfortable bringing disparate parts together. His oeuvre, widely ranging in media, holds together formally in his inclination towards dryly-calculated linear articulations. Most attractive here are the smaller works of oil on panel.
These works reveal themselves slowly. Intense in hue saturation, intermeshings of planar structures unfold before the viewer's eye. As time is taken to understand the paint layer by layer, the initially confrontational line collisions give way to reveal deeply receding, self-reflective spaces that invite viewer contemplation.
In this way, the works operate spatially as if each were a murky gem. They are able to be understood both for their convex physical appearance of rigid structure but also as spaces to be looked into- ponderously self-reflective matrices of competing color.
Each additive line laid down obscuring a wealth of information that came before it, every move of this process-driven work seems conscious of skillfully manipulating painting contradictions. Installation decisions further enforce this sentiment. The small paintings hung over the mural operate much in the same way as each of his lines, adding to the complexity of the overall composition by obscuring the information which came first. Inherently an additive process, this is as much about the work on view as it points to the addition/negation aspect of all painterly creation.
De Oude's most abundant skill lies in corralling seemingly contradictory art themes to his advantage. The artist has a knack for creating work that attracts the eye with a brightly arresting outward appearance but holds the viewer's attention through recognition of an academic pursuit of his visual idea. Like much painting work, his creations are harmed greatly by the flattening effect our addiction to technology forces upon us in the proliferation of art via jpeg. The sensitivity to color and space de Oude produces in his paintings are greatly rewarded through patient viewing in situ. Finding the meaty substance therein may take a few moments. The return however, will be worth the wait. Arts and Sciences Projects. June 9th- 26th 2011. - Matthew Hassel, Critic for NYArts Magazine