Atelier Autonoom Academie van Bouwkunst Groningen 1997-1998
JOEP VAN LIESHOUT
INTERVIEWED BY KLAAR VAN DER LIPPE
"So your use of color
in space is it governed by chance, association and
"Do you value color? Do
you make a distinction between colors that you like and those you
don't? It seems as though you find all colors equally beautiful,
don't you really have any preference?"
"You use a lot of vivid
colors in your work. Those of course are the most striking?"
"To put it another way.
It's the primary and secondary colors which are a sort of
physical given. But with you they're signals or traffic colours,
that's what we most closely associate with yellow, red and blue.
Is that what lies behind your choice?"
"Looking round me here,
though, I see completely different colors being brought in. Is
that what you're working with at the moment?"
excites my senses is seeing color applied to large surfaces. It's
a completely new kind of experience. I feel it has a very
stimulating effect on my state of mind. Do you feel that
"Are there any colors
that make you feel gloomy? Stupid question since I know you like
all colors. In fact, I suppose it's the absence of color that'd
make you gloomy? Am I right there?"
"What do you think of
this color combination, I find it really vibrant? What is it
exactly: ochre combined with that pink wood, completely
unexpected, but it's actually extraordinarily vivid. Does it give
you the same thrill?"
"Are there people whose
choice of color you admire? I see you've got a book of René
Daniels here. Do you like his use of color?"
"And what about Peter
Struycken's use of color? Because when I hear you talking about
color and the combination of chance, on the one hand, and that
intensity on the other, then it's got to be something in which
you can almost identify yourself? Would that be right?"
"But did you really
mean it when you said that all the painters you know use color in
an ugly way?"
"What always strikes me
is how color changes, particularly taste in color. Purple and
orange, for example, are typical colors which reflect trends and
particular times. Are you fashion conscious in that
"But there are also
colors that appeal to you to a greater or lesser degree at
different times, you use them and then you drop them again."
"I don't notice much
color in your own interior. Really just the colors of the
materials. The only color accents are in the curtains, fairly
large, pronounced areas of color, the inside of your sleeping
unit and your files. Is that deliberate?"
"People and color,
intense colors, do they appeal to you? For instance, are you
attracted to a woman who's dressed in an all-pink suit like
"Joep, thank you very much, it was a great interview."