Van Renselar has travelled extensively. He grew up in South Wales, moving to Little Venice in London in his teens then on to Keston, where he now lives and works.
As a contemporary abstract artist Van Renselar is more concerned with form and colour as an alternative to subject matter. It is not his aim to represent our surroundings or any particular object, he takes ideas from experiences which are visual, cerebral and emotional in nature. His inspiration can as easily be sparked by lines from a song as by an emotional event.
Colour is equally as important as the general design and Van Renselar will spend a lot of time perfecting the tone of a particular colour, his primary objectives being to establish harmony both in terms of composition and the use of colour. Across the range of pictures there is no defining key of symbols - there is no ‘language’ for the viewer to learn, each picture establishes itself on its own visual merits and the viewer’s interest.
Van Renselar says, "I want to use my knowledge of colour, shape and form to make pictures which involve and intrigue the viewer. I take ideas from around and within me, using intuition and imagination to create a new context. Much of my work stems from my subconscious, where I see actions, events and ideas as particular images and colours. As some music can take on a different meaning after it has left the composer's pen, I encourage the viewer to create their own story about the meaning of the picture.
As Van Renselar says, "I want to make pictures which involve and intrigue the viewer. I take ideas from around and within me, using intuition and imagination to create a new context. Much of my work stems from my subconscious, where I see actions, events and ideas as particular shapes and colours. It took me a long time to fully realise that not everyone translated the world in this way.”
Van Renselar describes himself as an abstract artist, yet his paintings sometimes feature figurative elements. Van Renselar explains: "These are spontaneous symbols, they are just things that occur to me when making the particular picture, hence their meaning can differ from picture to picture. They seldom have any meaning related to what they actually resemble. I don’t really want my pictures to be understood, I want them to pose questions. To me, deconstructing a picture in this way would be like dividing a poem into its single words.
TECHNICAL DESCRIPTION OF VAN RENSELAR'S WORKS
Van Renselar creates his pictures in 3 stages.
As he describes: Firstly I hand draw and paint all elements of each picture on paper, fabric, board, found objects or whatever comes to hand that I think will help create the effect I'm after. Occasionally I use photographs but these are for reference and are always repainted. There are typically 10-20 elements per picture.
Secondly I scan all these separate elements into a computer using a very high resolution scanner. At this stage I can place the elements exactly where I want them and even make any adjustments to colours if I wish. Think of this stage as if you were making a collage. This results in a single computer file.
Thirdly, I can now transfer the file directly onto canvas using the giclee process. Giclee is a kind of ultra high quality inkjet process, and needs to marry the inks and canvas to guarantee light fastness, and gives an incredibly high quality image.
This form of working is sometimes mistakenly called CGA (computer generated art) - a description Van Renselar rejects. The computer generates nothing at all, it is merely a ‘receptacle’ for collecting the different elements together - collage is a more accurate description.
Van Renselar has recently shown work at:
The Innovative Art Fair, Brick Lane
On The Wall Art Fair, London Olympia
The Brighton Art Fair
Arndean Gallery, Cork Street, W1
White Space Gallery, Greenwich
Gallery Kaleidoscope, NW3
The Railway, Tulse Hill (Solo)
Brighton Artists Gallery (Solo)
Art Basel (Miami)
Broadway Gallery, Broadway, New York, USA
The Peacock Gallery
The Light Gallery, London W2
Globe Gallery, Weybridge
The Attic, Parliament Street, New Delhi
The New Cavendish, London