‘Hiccup’, 2024, polyester/steel, 420 cm

The sculptures by Sander Buijk evoke an autonomous world filled with contradictions. His cartoonish figures are simultaneously tough and fragile, caricatured and vulnerable, emotional and reserved. His choice of materials is equally unconventional, combining cast concrete with neon and/or polished aluminum.

Buijk’s visual language closely resembles animation figures found in comics or on the internet, with a seductively simple form. However, unexpected additions imbue the sculptures with a more complex identity. In their autonomous world, most sculptures are closed off and silent. Buijk constructs, combines, and labels the sculptures in a manner that creates ambiguity, which both touches and astonishes.

He explains that the impetus for his work lies in the interaction between human relationships, on abstract, emotional, or physical levels. The resulting controversies fascinate him. His sculptures are powerful in their playful simplicity. By giving his figures a strong tactility, he aims to entice and engage the viewer, while simultaneously maintaining a distance through material and form.

Many of his sculptures consist of combinations of loose concrete elements. These constructed and assembled elements acquire a special twist through unexpected additions. Experimentation with material usage is an essential part of the design process, where he seeks an ambivalence that adds an extra layer to the sculptures. What interests him in the creation of sculpture is the search for boundaries. He aims for sculptures that communicate visually effectively, while retaining their individuality, spontaneity, and roughness. These sculptures are not overly narrative, thereby challenging the viewer to interpret. It’s a merging of contradictions that seemingly belong together.