Joke De Pever (1993) graduated in a Bachelor of Applied Psychology in 2016 and, after that, in a Master of Painting at KASK in Ghent. During her first course of study, she delved into the effect of pornography on the self-image. Depicting the human body therefore plays a major role in her work. In the past three years, De Pever took part in several exhibitions and, this year, she can add Ithaka to the list.
De Pever’s work is featured on this edition both in the online exhibition and in the Odyssee.
For Odyssee, De Pever presents Vleeshoop (‘Meat Pile’). The painting is an amalgam of photographs pasted on top of each other, enlarged and reduced… By doing so, she brought the figures together and incarnated her own desire in this painting.
In this work, she wanted to paint people who feel good about each other and are therefore themselves without having to comply with society’s ideals of beauty. The figures she portrays are people who have known each other for years and who share each other’s joys and sorrows. Because of this, they have passed the phase of ‘always being beautiful for each other’ and show themselves as they really are.
Vleeshoop examines themes such as feminism, ugly beauty, absurd everydayness and physicality. With her work, De Pever wants to show the female body in a natural way. She wants to step away from the urge to be sexy and promote an ordinary body, without sexualizing it or conveying disgust.
“A body can also be just a body”.
The idea for Vleeshoop was born in the middle of the pandemic. At that time, it was absolutely inappropriate to put a lot of people on top of each other. The painting reflects the inner longing for real physical contact with family and friends. For her, seeing each other in real life is much more valuable than through a screen.
Ready? Walk to the next location: ‘T Galetje, Tiensestraat 46.