Eugène Brands the Netherlands — 1903

Eugène Brands

Eugène Brands °1903

Eugène Brands (Dutch, 1913–2002) was a painter and one of the founders of the CoBrA movement. Born in Amsterdam, Brands studied commercial art at the Amsterdam School of the Arts. After graduating, he spent several months working as a designer in various advertising firms, before dedicating himself to fine art full time. Early on, he created assemblages from found objects. He also started experimenting with paint and language. During World War II, he became influenced by the Surrealists’ concept of automatic writing, and created pictures in charcoal, ink, and gouache inspired by the cosmos, and developed an extensive collection of ritual objects and music from Africa. His work also betrayed a fascination with children’s drawings – a characteristic CoBrA feature, aided in Brands’ case by the fact that his daughter Eugenie was a toddler at the time. For many years he drew inspiration from this source, creating magnificent little paintings, most of them oil on paper.In the 60's, Brands gradually abandoned representational art in favour of abstraction. He began to paint large areas of colour “of an impenetrable, cotton wool-like substance,” as CoBrA historian Willemijn Stokvis writes. He continued doing so until well advanced in years, except that from 1993 onwards he concentrated on gouaches on paper, which he found less physically demanding.
Eugene Brands, Dalende zon een landschap, Oil on paper, 51 x 61 cm framed in black oak frame, UV museum glass
Eugene Brands, Zonsopkomst 1967, Gouache on brown cardboard, 68 x 49.5 cm framed
Eugene Brands, Zonsopkomst 1967, Gouache on brown cardboard, 68 x 49.5 cm framed
Eugene Brands, New York shopping 1986, Collage with paper bag, painted remnants of tape and gouache mounted on carboard, Signed by Brands, 61 x 45 cm


21.04.23   Vernissage ‘Between the red lines’ – A thought-provoking vernissage is held in our pop-up space to officially open Yes but no. This exhibition showcases paintings from both local talent as well as internationally acclaimed artists and spans across multiple art movements and periods. Please feel welcome to join and have a chat (or not) about the collection.