Background In my work as a painter I am inspired by architecture, in particular industrial and cultural heritage. I am originally from Voorburg and my interest in industrial and cultural architectural forms started during high school when I wanted to become an architect. My drawing master at school was Jan Asselbergs, a famous Dutch portrait painter. He encouraged me to further develop this work, but at that time I opted for a law degree. In addition to my legal career, I have always made drawings and paintings.
Invisible reality Over the past decades, the scope of my work has expanded. Now I like to draw the viewer's attention to a reality that cannot be seen at first glance. I am fascinated by perspectives, precision and color to create strange environments for people in an eclectic way in historic and mostly dilapidated buildings.
Inspiration My work is inspired by the paintings of famous artists such as M.C. Esscher, Carel Willink and Edward Hopper. My style is realistic, but I like to avoid photorealism. Despite the realism of the images, they retain an atmosphere of fantasy. The paintings sometimes have a surreal appearance that emphasizes the 'unbelievable'. At the same time, I hope that the narrative content will take the viewer on a socially critical journey and make him or her aware of new perspectives on reality and illusions of reality. Especially for the meaning of the figures in my paintings, I have often been inspired by the philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas (1906-1995). According to Levinas, the fellow human being is not just another person, but appears as a strange other. The 'strange Other' often appears in different guises in my paintings. Encounters with the Other are central. The Other (as Levinas also writes with a capital letter) is not an object that I can make use of. but often appears as 'an inaccessible creature that appeals to my responsibility' (quote Levinas, Het Menselijk Gelaat, Uitg. Ambo, Utrecht, 1969).
Method I use various media including photography and sketches to explore architecture and space. I usually visit the buildings I want to paint. I am continually fascinated by the way drawings and paintings can be shaped and reshaped to create space. My paintings develop through observation and are rather a response to the places I have visited in real life. I often start my work by noticing details of the environment; the way light filters through a window, for example, or the shadows that play on a wall. Sometimes I accentuate the observed phenomena by using acrylic paste and color. I work back and forth between photography and painting, developing layers, both in the creation process and in the work itself. The result is that my work parallels multiple layers of perception. I enjoy the research it takes to figure out what I'm looking at. By transforming what seems real, I hope to reveal the complex and mysterious dimensions of reality. When the viewer's perspective shifts or becomes distorted by my paintings, new insights into reality become possible. I have been making my oil paintings since 2013 in my studio at Vest 69 in Gouda. The source of inspiration for my paintings are abandoned and often dilapidated industrial buildings, which I usually capture through sketches and photos just before demolition or renovation. For example, I painted buildings on the Spoorzone in Tilburg, the Leather Factory in Oisterwijk, Zollverein near Essen, the Electricity Factory in The Hague and a dilapidated steel factory in France. In addition to industrial heritage, I also paint cultural heritage: well-maintained or restored buildings with cultural value. Examples include: the Woudagemaal in Lemmer and the 'Cloisters' belonging to Gloucester Cathedral in England. I want to make my paintings a special experience through the use of color and light. Dark desolation must make way for light and warmth. I regularly add characters to the heritage that give the image a different or extra meaning. Some paintings contain a 'hidden message' or a reference to current events.
Technology When making my paintings, I draw the basic pattern of the buildings and monuments based on previously taken photos and sketches, usually directly on the canvas. I sometimes use acrylic paint as a base coat. For the details I apply acrylic modeling paste and sometimes also gold foil or parchment paper. I paint the top layers with oil paint and to achieve depth, the painting is often composed of several layers of glaze.
Awards and exhibitions My paintings have now been nominated several times for a prize and I have also won many national and international prizes. In June 2020, the balloting committee (BC) for participation in exhibitions of the Kunstkring Prins Alexander in Rotterdam wrote about my work: 'The BC is unanimously of the opinion that Bert's work is an asset to the exhibitions of our Kunstkring Prins Alexander. His paintings immediately demand attention and are cheerful because of the use of color and light. What is most striking in the development of each theme is the precision, which makes every detail thought-provoking and surprising. From his previous life this could perhaps be referred to as "legal" accuracy. So the technology is in perfect order. One of the BC members says: "I don't easily give a 10, but I would like to make an exception for this work."
I regularly exhibit in galleries and at well-known Dutch art fairs, such as the National Art Days and the Brabant Art Fair. Furthermore, my work has so far been exhibited in eight European countries and in the United States, China and Japan. Exhibitions are planned for 2024 in the architecture museum 'Nagele' in the Noord-Oostpolder and the Artexpo New York.
Future With my work I am always looking for new challenges and trying new angles. For example, in 2023 I made a series of paintings of buildings with appealing modern architecture. An example of this is the painting 'Flashback' of the new station in Arnhem. The painting depicts three people in the foreground. Two travelers who have just arrived are informed about the history of Arnhem and the station by the third person with the white cap. In the background are two people looking back on the past. Outside you can see the contours of the houses that were severely damaged by the bombing of Arnhem. My paintings can be found at www.berthermans.kunstinzicht.nl and by telephone appointment in the studio at Vest 69 in Gouda: 06-55324696
Overview Bert Hermans paintings 2019-present
2023 1. Exhibitions - Gallery 'Kunst bij Karel', Gorinchem, Netherlands from 6-1-2023 to 2-4-2023 - Brabant Art Fair, Spoorzone Tilburg, Netherlands from 18-3-2023 to 19-3-2023 - 'Parallel Worlds', online exhibition Contemporary Art Curator Magazine, 20-09-2023 to 20-12-2023. - Lapré lecture Erasmus University Rotterdam, 1-11-2023. - National Art Days Gorinchem, 18-11-2023 to 19-11-2023. - Spectrum Red Dot Miami, USA, 30-11-2022 to 4-12-2022
2. Nominations and awards - Second Prize 'Excellent Art Book Design Award 2022', Enter into Art, Lounge 3, Gabriele Walter, Jan. 2023. - Award of Excellence, Artist of the Year 2022-2023 contest, Circle Foundation for the Arts, Feb. 2023. - Light Space & Time, Special Recognition Award and Honorable Mention Award, 13th Cityscapes Art Competition, March 2023. - Winner Collectors Art Prize, Contemporary Art Curator Magazine, March 2023. - Award of Artistic Excellence, Spotlight Magazine Cover Contest, Circle Foundation for the Arts, March 2023. - Finalist Award ArtIDEAL Magazine Cover Contest, Circle Foundation for the Arts’, Lyon, June 2023. - Winner ‘TALENT PRIZE AWARD’, 9th ‘ABSTRACT art competition’, Teravarna, Italy, June 2023. - Finalist Award participation RED DOT Miami Art Fair, juli 2023. - Winner 'Free presentation in the 13th issue of World Wide Art Magazine Contest', Artavita, July 2023. - 'Public nomination Artist of the year 2024', Stichting Kunstweek, Oosterhout 2023. - Finalist Award, Artavita, September 2023. - World of Art, Artist of the Year 2023 Award for the Best in Art & Creativity, September 2023. - Nomination 'Painting of the Year 2023', painting 'Drowning', November 2023. - Finalist Certificate Artavita, 61st Online Art Contest competing for participation at Artexpo New York April,4-7, 2024. - Creative Excellence Award, CFA Artist Book Contest, Circle Foundation for the Arts’, Lyon, November 2023. - Art Award, National Art Days, 2023, November 2023.
3. Publications - Excellent Art, Enter into Art, Lounge 3, Gabriele Walter ed. Königswinter, Germany, p. 94-95. - Museum- en Galeriekrant, Spring 2023, p. 24. - Vind, History, Archeology, Art and Antiques, no. 49, 2023, p. 148. - The First Berliner Art Book 2023, Art Management Berlin, Berlin, Germany, March 2023, p. 18 - 19. - 'Color Symphonies', Enter into Art, Kurt Ries (ed.), Königswinter, Germany, March 2023. p.16-17. - Museum- en Galeriekrant, Autumn 2023, p. 21. - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 34, Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, October 2023, p. 68.
2022 1. Exhibitions - Gallery De Tuinkamer, Industrial Heritage, 21-1-2022 to 5-3-2022 - Kunstpodium Prinsenpark Rotterdam, June, 12, 2022 - Solo exhibition Industrial and cultural heritage, Gouderak Library, 15-3-2022 to 15-6-2022 - Participant National Atelier Weekend Summer 2022, Gouda, 25-06-2022 to 26-06-2022 - Artexpo Dallas, Dallas, USA, 16-18 september 2022 - Exhibition Water, Art Circle Prince Alexander, Rotterdam, 6-7-2022 to 28-9-2022 - EuropArtFair, Amsterdam, 30-9-2022 to 2-10-2022 - National Art Days, Gorinchem, 19-11-2022 to 20-11-2022 - Spectrum Red Dot Miami, USA, 30-11-2022 to 4-12-2022
2. Nominations and awards - Awarded Artist 50th Artavita Online Contest with theme 'Hope', February 2022. - Special Merit Award, Light Space & Time, 13th Annual Abstracts, Online Art Competition, March 2022. - Finalist Award, 52e Artavita Online Contest, mei 2022. - Award of Excellence, 6th CFA Artist of the Month contest, Circle Foundation for the Arts, June 2022. - Special Recognition Award, Light Space & Time, 12th Annual “Open” Art Exhibition, July 2022. - Second Prize, Art Competition 'Water', Art Circle Prince Alexander, Rotterdam, 5 July 2022. - Winner of the 54th Artavita Online Contest and selected with the painting 'Blasfemia' for publication in the 10th edition of the World Wide Art Magazine. - Artavita, Finalist Certificate, 43e Online Contest, exhibition Artexpo New York op March 30 - April 2, 2023, October 2022 - Public nomination Artist of the year 2023', Stichting Kunstweek, Oosterhout 2023.
3. Publications - The First Berliner Art Book 2022, Art Management Berlin, Berlin, Germany, February 2022, p. 17-18. - Art Ideal Magazine, Vol. 2, March 2022, p. 49. - 'Odyssee of Life', Enter into Art, Kurt Ries (ed.), Königswinter, Duitsland, April 2022. p. 19. - Vind, History, Archeology, Art and Antiques, no. 46, 2022, p. 130. - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 28 Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 71. - Important World Artists, 5, 2022, WorldWide Art Books Inc., 2022, Santa Barbara, USA, p. 112.
2021 1. Exhibitions - EuropArtFair, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2-7-2021 until 4-7-2021 - Tokyo International Art Fair, Tokio, Japan, 8-10-2021 until 9-10-2021 - Kunststroming Gouda, Netherlands,10-9-2021 until 12-9-2021 - Art Eindhoven, Eindhoven, 4-9-2021 until 5-9-2021 - Nationale Kunstdagen, Gorinchem, Netherlands, 6-11-2021 until 7-11-2021 - Artexpo New York, USA, 18-11-2021 until 21-11-2021
2. Nominations and awards - Gallery Winner of 2020, National Atelier, 1/12/2021. - Artavita, Finalist Certificate 43rd. Online Contest, exhibition Artexpo New York in November 2021, February 2021 - Artavita, Winner 44th Artavita Online Contest, March 2021, April 2021 - Light Space & Time, Special Recognition Award, 11th Annual "Figurative" Online Art Competition, April 2021 - National Atelier, Exhibition winner, theme "Blast Furnaces", April 2021 - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Certificate of Artistic Excellence, 6th Circle Quarterly Art Review Magazine Contest, May 2021 - Artavita, Finalist Certificate 46th Online Contest, exhibition San Diego in October 2021, June 2021 - Tokyo GLOBAL ART AWARD 2021, Finalist, 'De Harpist' 11-10-2021 - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Certificate of Artistic Excellence, 7th Circle Quarterly Art Review Magazine Contest, October 2021 - Winner of the 48th Artavita Online Contest and selected with the paintings 'Holy Light' and 'Hora Est' for publication in the World Wide Art Magazine. - Awarded Artist for artwork distinguished in the 49th Artavita Online Art Contest competing for the Artist of the Year 2021 title and selected for inclusion in an Artavita virtual exhibition, Dec. 2021. - Second Prize Winner (back cover), Enter into Art, Art Lounge 2/2, Book project and contest 'Moonlight Sonatas for Beethoven', Dec. 2021
3. Publications - World Wide Art Magazine, 2020, Issue 10, Vol. 1 February 2021, p. 125. - Current Masters, 6, World-wide Art Books, Santa Barbara, USA, maart 2021, p. 60. - Kunst Vitamine Special, 2021, p. 40. - Vind, History, Archeology, Art and Antiques, no. 41, 2021, p. 145. - The First Berliner Art Book 2021, Art Management Berlin, Berlin, Germany, February 2021, p. 20-21. - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 22 Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 78-79. - Catalogus 2021 EuropArtFair 2021, Amsterdam, p. 44-45. - Art Retreat, Enter into Art, Vol. 6, Königswinter, Germany, May 2021, p. 63. - Catalogus Art Eindhoven, Klokgebouw Eindhoven 2021, p. 29. - Jaarboek kunstenaars 22, Stichting Kunstweek, Raamsdonksveer, 2021, p. 70-71. - Kunst Vitamine, Herfst 2021, p. 5. - Catalogus 2021, Nationale Kunstdagen, Gorinchem, p. 30-31. - Vind, Geschiedenis, Archeologie, Kunst en Antiek, nr. 44, 2021, p. 124 - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 26 Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 75.
1.Exhibitions - Los Angeles (LA) Art Show, Los Angeles, USA, 5-2-2020 until 9-2-2020 - Annual Dutch Art Fair, Amsterdam, 9-10-2020 until 11-10-2020
2. Nominations and awards - Artavita 35th Online Contest, Winner Free Publication in World Wide Art Magazine, January 2020 - World of Art, Artist of the Year 2020 Award for the Best in Art & Creativity, January 2020 - Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery, Winner "Solo Art Series" Solo Art Exhibitions, January 2020 - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Artist of the Year Award, Honorable Mention Award, January 2020 - Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery, Cityscipes, Special Merit Award "The Last Civil Servant", February 2020 - Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery, Cityscipes, Special Recognition Award "Graffiti House" February 2020 - Artavita, 1st Place Award, 37th Online Contest, Winner free exhibition San Diego Art Fair in September 2020, March 2020 - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Certificate of Artistic Excellence, June 2020 - Contemporary Art Curator Magazine, Artist of the Future Award, November, 14, 2020
3. Publications - World of Art, Contemporary Art Magazine, Guggenheim Issue, 10, Vol 1, 2020, p. 125. - The First Berliner Art Book 2020, Art Management Berlin, Berlin, Germany, February 2020 - Important World Artists, 4, World-wide Art Books, Santa Barbara, USA, March 2020 - Contemporary Art Station, Art Collector's Choice, London, March 2020 - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 18 Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 42-43. - Vind, History, Archeology, Art and Antiques, no. 38, 2020, p. 145. - World Wide Art Magazine, 2020, Issue 2, June 2020, p. 72-77.
1. Exhibitions - The Illusion of Reality, Bologna, Italië, 28-11-2019 until 12-12-2019 - Participant Dutch Artist Studio Exhibitions, Fall 2019, Gouda, 16-11-2019 until 17-11-2019 - Dutch National Art Days, Nieuwegein, 09-11-2019 until 10-11-2019 - Annual Dutch Art Fair, Amsterdam, 11-10-2019 until 13-10-2019 - 'Patrimoine industriel et culturel', Clémont, Sologne, France, 13-09-2019 until 16-09-2019 - Technics on the SS Rotterdam, Rotterdam, 27-07-2019 until 27-07-2019 - Participant Dutch Artist Studio Exhibitions, Summer 2019, Gouda, 22-06-2019 until 23-06-2019 - Artexpo New York, New York, USA, 04-04-2019 until 07-04-2019 - 'Industrial and Cultural Heritage', Evertshuis, Bodegraven, 07-02-2019 until 04-04-2019
2. Nominations and Awards - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Artist of the Year Award, Certificate of Excellence, 22 Jan 2019 - Artavita 30th Online Contest, Certificate of Excellence, Jan. 2019 - Light Space Time, Special Merit Award, ‘Overblaak’, Feb. 2019 - Circle Foundation for the Arts, Honorable Mention Award, 19 April 2019 - Artavita 31th Online Contest, Certificate of Excellence, 30 April 2019 - Artavita, Contest Finalist Certificate, Art San Diego, USA, May 2019 - Light Time Space, Landscapes Art Exhibition, Special Merit Award, ‘Small Road near Fen', June 2019 - Artavita 33th Online Contest, Certificate of Excellence, Spectrum Miami Art Fair, USA, August 2019 - Annual Dutch Art Fair, Winner Art Services Fair Award, Amsterdam Oct. 2019 - Nomination Dutch Painting of the Year 2019, ‘The Cathedral’, November 2019. - Light Space Time, Enter into Art, Lounge 2 Excellence Jury Award, November 2019 - The Illusion of Reality, Award of Excellence, Bologna, Italy, 30 November, 2019
3. Publications - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 13, Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 10-11. - The First Berliner Art Book, 2019, Art Management Berlin, 2019, p. 22-23. - Vind, History, Archaeology, Art and Antiques, 33, 2019, p. 113.. - Art & Beyond, Vol 59, April 2019, P. 38. - Spotlight, Contemporary Art Magazine, 14, Circle Foundation, Lyon, France, p. 45-47