Inge Van Der Haegen is a Belgian painter, ceramist and sculptor who has always been fascinated by the human body and how it reflects one’s state of mind. She spent years trying to visually express the vulnerability and melancholy that comes with the thought of life’s finiteness. She has always been particularly drawn to the neck in a posture of surrender, and this has been a recurring theme in her works. The use of black skin tones in Inge’s works stems from her constant search for the most refined, purest form of man, which she sees as being embodied by black skin.
Inge’s latest work, the Headline series, was created especially for an exhibition in June 2023 to celebrate the independence of Congo. These works are different from her usual dark color palettes, as she chose to use sun-drenched imagery, inspired by the contagious joie de vivre of the Congolese people. Even though the figures in the paintings have no facial expressions, their postures – often focused on the back – give a glimpse into their inner frustrations and rebelliousness. The texts or graphics serve as a reflection of the need to be heard with a “f*ck you” sarcasm. This series is also a tribute to her mother, Maria Roelandt, and her latest exhibition, “Krantenkoppen”.