°1986, Mortsel, Belgium
Lives and works in Antwerp, Belgium
Frederik Lizen (°1986, Mortsel) uses the city of Antwerp as a studio, appropriating non-spaces or grey areas in the public space as his canvas. His colourful work, preferably painted on wooden fences securing construction sites, stimulate a dialogue and converge the private act of looking with public habits of a broad audience. This process works both ways. In addition to the vision, expression and background of the artist, the works are also determined by the city itself. Along with the fact that he does not start on a blank canvas, Lizen intentionally leaves his paintings untouched for longer periods of time, subjecting the piece to external factors. It provides the artist with a certain kind of freedom, making his best artistic decisions outside by ‘quickly looking left, right, straightforward’. By removing his work from the street, the artist changes the initial short-term function of the wooden panels into something with a more permanent nature.
At the other hand, the artist feels a strong need to escape the city, fleeing towards the countryside where he consistently observes his surroundings, which results in series of work on paper. This paradoxical approach is what defines Lizen’s body of work, which consists both of large monumental paintings and smaller work on paper, each strongly determined by the surroundings in which they are created.
To conclude, the artist uses language, slang, typography and puns; but also animals, as an essential part of his compositions to provide his work with multiple levels of interpretations and to talk about current issues, mankind and human behaviour with humour and irony.