Casper Faassen (*1975, NL) grew up in Leiden. It was there that he developed his passion for drawing, painting and art. Famous Leiden masters – Gerrit Dou (1613-1675), Jan Steen (1625-1679) and Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669) – were his inspiration. After leaving high school Faassen studied at the University of Amsterdam. He continued to pursue his artistic ambitions, painting daily and thus compiling an impressive oeuvre. The influence of Amedeo Modigliani (1884-1920) in his work – in particular his (female) nudes – can clearly be seen in both subject matter and strong line definition.
Characteristic of Faassen‘s works is his ongoing innovative approach to material, techniques and disciplines. In addition to painting and graphic art, Faassen devotes much of his time to the medium of photography. It is in his photographic work that we recognize the Leiden painters who inspired him. His distinctive works depict their classic 17th-century themes such as cityscapes, vanitas paintings and flower arrangements.
A look at Faassen’s œuvre as a whole reveals that such themes as transience, beauty and female splendour form the basis of his work.
In his own words: "The juxtaposition between the eternal and the temporal, beauty and decay, appearing and disappearing is my main theme. All painters and photographers have the ability to freeze time and capture a single moment. I emphasize that moment by adding an element of time – not necessarily by using literal vanitas references but through the handling of materials. The use of craquelure is my symbol for time and introduces a visual element since it is oil paint and thus sharp, contrasting with the rest of the blurry image. Most of the distance is created by the way the picture is taken, through a matte medium. I print the image on to that same matte medium giving a further sense of distance. What I also like about the craquelure is the texture it gives to the surface or skin. The work becomes more material, more substantial, pointing toward painting instead of photography and thus encouraging a different way of perceiving the work. Within this visual language I`ve grown so comfortable with, I love to explore different themes."