Joris van der Ploeg

Joris van der Ploeg (1989)
Lives and works in Groningen, the Netherlands.

Joris van der Ploeg (1989) launches a new series of work at his new solo exhibition “Transcendence”. Again the young female is the central theme, which makes the work characteristic for him as an artist. He transforms the “usual” portrait into something new: a version where the human fades and transcends.

‘I only photograph young females because I find them absolutely mysterious and pure.’ Van der Ploeg is looking for the most natural form of the model, which is the starting point in his work. He emphasizes this aspect, enlarges it and shifts it to a higher level where the models emerge above themselves. It has been a very conscious choice to deprive the image of all context so that all attention would be on the model. There is no use of make-up and the postures are not staged, which leads to classical and natural compositions. By getting rid of all possible elements of meaningful context the model remains in her purest and most natural shape. He extracts the essence, which he enlarges and uses to amplify the mystique around the model. The use of analogue photography and his own technique enhances this: the duplication in the image works in an alienating way and creates an intangible feeling.

“Future Heroes” are all young girls who are not yet in high school. They are in that fragile phase between being a child and hitting puberty: the phase where society has not yet influenced them. They are getting more and more conscious about the world surrounding them and about themselves. Van der Ploeg is fascinated about the intangible complexity of this phase that will soon disappear and evolve into something else. The artist shows the duplicity between the fragility of this age, but also the power they have with a strong developed character of her own. The way they look into the world is fascinating. It makes the images endearing but also confronting at the same time.

“Transcendence” is the latest series of Van der Ploeg and will be shown for the first time. In this series he was not explicitly looking for a “super” woman but because of his admiration for women and his intention to portray her in a strong, pure and mystical manner, every model transcends to the level of a superwoman. By portraying