Frans Erkelens

Frans Erkelens was born in 1937 in Bandung, Indonesia. In 1960 he graduated cum laude at the Royal Academy for Fine Arts in The Hague Netherlands. After winning the Esso art prize, he started his career as a surrealist painter. Erkelens considers himself an "archaic-realist". His aim is to bridge cultural differences on a spiritual level. Erkelens is currently making a series of oil paintings based on Indonesia. On thes trips he got inspired by the Goddess of Love, the Kanjeng Ratu Kidul. In the places Parang Tritis, Plabuan Ratu, Jogyakarta and Solo, he had a lot of spiritual meetings and experiences. For instance, at the court of Solo, he was invited to offer a painting of the Njai Loro Kidul( Goddess of the South Sea) to the Susuhunan (Sultan). The royal feast of the Susuhunan and the performance jof the holy Bedaya dance also made a lasting impression on Erkelens.
In 1964 he met Johfra and Diana Vandenberg. It was Diana who persuaded him to drop all this side-lines and concentrate on painting alone. He took lessons from her and he developed rather early his specif style which evolved continuously: he went through Magic Realism, Fantasic Realism and Archaic Realism. In 1974 Frans was onde of the Meta-Realist involved in the Golden Tour. His work from that period shows influence of Johfra but his work is continuously subject to changes. Every time he paints around a certain theme. He created series of paintings about Judaism, Thailand, clowns and the last few years he is working on a series in wich his fatherland indonesia appears. Many well known people have crossed his path such as Britt Eckland, ex-wife of Peter Sellers who once opened his exhibition at Zandvoort. H.M. Queen Juliana visited his exhibition several times. His oevre is extence, up to now his work can be seen in three galleries at the same time.

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