Nadia Naveau

° 1975

Born in Bruges (BE), lives in Antwerp (BE).

Nadia Naveau: playful confusion

Nadia Naveau studied sculpture at the Royal Academy of Antwerp and the Higher Institute of Fine Arts in Antwerp and has been teaching sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp since 2006. Her visual oeuvre essentially is a modelled fairytale world populated with the most diverse forms and constructs, including comic book and far West characters and exotic masks or art-historical reconstructions. Always recognisable but also always different. The most striking feature of her visual oeuvre is its associative character. All her sculptures, however large or small, are fantasies, hand-crafted from clay. For many years, the artist has thus been building her own world, similar to a girl playing with knick-knacks and trinkets, which she combines into an imaginary ensemble.

In her oeuvre, Naveau experiments with shapes, materials, and colour, drawing inspiration from various contexts she kneads into a strange, idiosyncratic imaginary world. She seamlessly combines forms and iconography from antiquity with those of our contemporary society. Each image has its own story. Naveau explores the boundaries between the figurative and the abstract, the baroque and the stylised. Her eclectic sculptures and installations are an assemblage of different elements or forms.

The tactile act of modelling leads to intuitive associations in which inspiration is just as important as chance. Naveau's sculptures are three-dimensional collages, always rendered in different dimensions, comprising different references or explanations. These references are difficult to delineate because Naveau is equally fascinated by Disney characters and classical sculptures and monuments. However, these recognisable and familiar images become distorted, stylised and intuitively moulded in her work. Each of Naveau's sculptures attest to her thirst for innovation, but equally to the pleasure she takes in the impetuousness of modelling. Her sculptures are both exuberant and petrified, classical and contemporary. She uses various materials for her sculptures and installations, including plaster, ceramic, polyester, concrete or plasticine. "I think a sculpture needs to evoke a sense of alienation. I like sculptures that draw me in, the kind that I don't know how to interpret or deal with. You can almost taste a good sculpture, there's something tasty about it..."


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