Ben Van den Berghe
Ben Van den Berghe (°1985) is an artist based in Antwerp, Belgium.
He achieved a Master in Visual arts at Sint Lucas in 2008, and has since then been active as an artist and organisor of artistic projects.
The central locus and therefore departure point of Van den Berghe’s practice is photography. It is both the medium of origin for many of his works and is also the discourse to which he primarily relates. His main interest in photography stems from the medium’s traditional affiliation with reality and truth. The photograph is a means to reveal something, uncover an essence, to make something visible. Van den Berghe’s varied works take a critical stance towards this ‘claim of truth’ and are bound together by the notion of revelation.
His work does not aim towards some kind of existential or metaphysical truth, but deals with a human reality saturated with subjective truths and therefore, meanings. Using photographs (both shot and found), videos and text-based works, Van den Berghe investigates how human reality is interlaced with psychological mechanisms, mindgames, lies, masquerades and desires… His working mode is a productive form of paranoia, his method an ongoing research-based focus that seeks to uncover the all-too-human reality behind events and images and the contexts in which they reside.
The hidden struggle that takes place in a handshake, the naive devotion of a churchgoer or a pigeon fancier, the political meaning we attach to ‘symbolic’ assaults. Though diverse, Van den Berghe’s subject matter is filtered through an artistic process that testifies to a human longing for order and belief; for something that transcends the subject and holds its world together. By measuring the ‘real’ under the surface of both reality and image (photo, video, text), his work tries to open up a critical view on what’s seemingly evident and yet almost invisible. Van den Berghe does not perform his research in a splendid isolation but continuously works together with both artists and non-artists.
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