In atmospheric and colourful paintings, Emma van Amerongen investigates the grey space between memory, fantasy, feelings and the actual image. Working primarily with acrylic ink on cotton, Van Amerongen engages in a continuous process of making, balancing between letting the material work and controlling the visual outcome. While every painting starts with an image she has seen, she uses the properties of her materials and coincidences in order to move increasingly away from the actual image, opening up an atmospheric spectrum. As a result of this continuous process, the images of Van Amerongen are always open to the interpretation of the spectator, while they simultaneously are pushed in a certain direction. Sensibility and emptiness play an important part in this, as they allow the spectator to use their imagination. Fleeting as the matter of memories, Van Amerongen’s paintings, therefore, provide a sense of recognition that speaks more to the mind of the spectator, than to the actual memories from which they originate.
Text by Menno Vuister (2021)