Ben Van den Berghe

Quad, Labourer On a Rooftop, Danny and Rocky, 2006 (Videos)

Ben Van den Berghe’s works take a self-conscious and critical stance towards the ‘claim of truth’. 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. Van den Berghe investigates how human reality is interlaced with psychological mechanisms, mind games, 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.

Stockholm Syndrome 2009, Aerial View 2009, The Universal Journalist 2008 (Photography)

Photography is the central locus and therefore departure point of Antwerp based artist Ben Van den Berghe’s practice. His main interest in photography stems from the medium’s traditional affiliation with reality and truth. At first sight, they want to show a piece of ‘reality’, but on another level, they also talk about the role that photography plays in presentation itself. Stockholm syndrome depicts a pigeon fancier who displays the beauty of his bird, and in doing so casts a shadow on the wall that creates the illusion that the bird is floating through the air.
Aerial view describes an aerial photograph of the former building of the hisk, one of the most important Belgian post-graduate art Institutes. After its move from Antwerp to Gent, all visual traces of its history had been removed from the building. Ironically, the photograph, found in the former director’s office, was the only image in the building that still reminded of its past. In The universal journalist, the title stands in contrast with the character of the portrayed man, and thus relativates the idea of objective journalism through photography.

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