Ad Gerritsen

Ad Gerritsen
Albertus Gradus (Ad) Gerritsen (Arnhem 1940 – 2015) was a well known figurative painter, collagist and sculptor, partially educated at the academy of Arnhem (he left and is now known as a self taught artist), in the city where he lived and worked most of his life. He would go on to become a well loved teacher in his own right at the AKI institute in Enschede. He was mostly known for being a painter although he expressed himself in manyfold ways. He wasn’t interested in conventions or in the many different meanings people attached to his work, but was very succesfull early on in his career none the less. The success came so soon that Ad was taken aback by it and left the art world for a time to do other things. In the mid eighties he enlisted as a student at the AKI and would later on teach there himself.

In the work of Ad Gerritsen, the individual is central in all his vulnerability. He likes to portray the underdog and the marginalized. Be it criminals, psychiatric patients or women; and also politically charged figures such as dictators, outsiders, traitors.

His work often deals with prejudice, clichés, and the role of representation and interpretation. Loneliness and emotion play a large role also. He seems to reduce the individual to a disquieting essence in a contrast rich palet.

In preparation for his paintings, he would often make collages and mixed media compositions, using magazine photos which he would project onto the canvas.

He combined his work as an artist with his tenure at the AKI and work as a creative therapist in psychiatric wards.

In 2015 the Museum of Modern Art in Arnhem dedicated a solo exposition to Ad Gerritsen under the title ‘ Messages from a mockingbird’. The museum has approximately 120 works by the artist in it’s collection. His work is also included in the collections of such institutions as the Art Museum of The Hague and Dordrechts Museum. Ad Gerritsen has won various awards and is a widely recognized artist.

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