Dilum Coppens


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In my practice, I make use of mythology to investigate how meaning is created.

Mythological stories were the first collective attempts to give meaning to the world around us. Based on stories in which Gods mainly play the leading role, people tried to explain our inner and outer world. By doing so, our ancestors could mentally place themselves within these realities. But, "God is inscrutable," causing the incomprehensible to be given a place in this search for their position.

This search sometimes seems to stagnate, when we think we have finally found a universal meaning. In my practice, I try to break it open again, and to emphasize the fluidity of meaning. Meaning is not something stable. Because we make and maintain it ourselves, we can also change it. The search is eternal.

Because the works refer to a certain myth, a direction is created in which I want the viewer to think. When one looks further into work, we can see a complex web of references. This way, an ambiguity is created. It is, again, a search that the viewer must undertake himself to create his own "meaning".

How the work is made therefore also has a deep connection with “creation” and “meaning” via “matter” and “word”.

With regard to matter, the historian J. Bronowski stated that "shaping" and "breaking" are basic concepts for creation. I investigate the different applications of these concepts in different media. In painting, this is usually expressed in marks made by applying paint and smearing it together. In video, this is reflected in the destruction of the source code and then virtually rebuilding it. To merge that with the “meaning”, textual excerpts from mythical stories are added, which provide the mindsets of the series.

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