Artist Wil van der Laan from Bunde, makes both sculptures and paintings. Van der Laan's work is special in its expressiveness, which is why his sculptures can often be found in public spaces, in addition to private collections.
During the Nederlandse Dansdagen, his special exhibition 'DANS' will be exhibited in the foyer on the first floor of Theater aan het Vrijthof. Wil's love and inspiration for dance originated in a special way. Read the story below:
After a journey through Andalusia in the company of flamenco dancer Carmen de Torres, Wil became acquainted with flamenco in an adventurous way, an intense experience that never left him. Wandering through gitanos-neighborhoods in Seville and flamenco performances in the various theaters in the Netherlands, inspired him to create dazzling paintings.
That was not Wil's first introduction to dance. As a young drawing teacher, decades ago, in the old convent school in Maastricht, where the studios of the Dance Preparatory Course were located, Wil, inspired by Degas and Rodin, made sketches of young ballet dancers. He greatly admired the discipline of the students who, in addition to their regular school program, trained their bodies day after day in preparation for their professional dance education. It was one of these former pupils, Claudia Laenen, ex-dancer and now head of marketing at the Nederlandse Dansdagen in Maastricht, who introduced him to the world of modern dance and let him experience life behind the scenes.
A new passion ignited in Wil. That fusion of strength and art, that pure, fusion of flexibility and energy. Dynamics, rhythms, surrender, polished muscular bodies in total control. For Wil a feast of recognition. For an artist with the trademark “Energy and Vitality” the world of modern dance turned out to be an exciting Fundgrube. Lighting and choreography, movement and stillness, pure acrobatics, passion and surrender: he wanted to capture it all, one moment in one image, all moments in a wide panorama.
Based on a shared love for flamenco, Wil came into contact with the director of the Nederlandse Dansdagen, Ronald Wintjens. It was decided to put together an exhibition with works inspired by flamenco, in Theater aan het Vrijthof during the next edition of the Dansdagen. However, due to corona, the exhibition was postponed... twice. “Every disadvantage has an advantage”, said the most gifted dancer in the Netherlands on the football field. The lockdown was like the breakthrough of a dam for Wil: a torrent of other "dance works" left his studio and part of it can be seen here, in the Foyer of the Theater aan het Vrijthof, as an artistic appetizer and dessert to the performances during the Nederlandse Dansdagen.