Who is Axel Vervoordt?
This grand seigneur of the design world, who has stationed himself and his talented team in a 19th-century former distillery complex near Antwerp, Belgium, has captivated admirers with his poetic sensibility since 1968. First coming to prominence as an antiques dealer, Axel Vervoordt is now a highly influential interior designer as well. The subtle rooms that are his claim to fame—spartan to some eyes but warmed by smooth plaster walls, hearty linen, and aged wood—exhibit a tranquillity that can be traced to his appreciation of Japanese Zen restraint.
What is the PROPORTIO exhibition?
The exhibition PROPORTIO examines the role that proportion plays in our lives and the complex universe in which we live. By examining wide-ranging and diverse representations found in art, nature, physics, economics, history, science, music, medicine, and many other subjects, the study of proportion uncovers the natural patterns that are used to create everything in the material world.
Proportion is not only a question of numbers. Nor is it a simple comparison of measurements and dimensions in relation to a whole. According to Plato, the definition of proportion is the transition from duality to unity. It’s the investigation of how elements and patterns are connected and interconnected across disciplines. It’s the investigation of how we, as humans, perceive those patterns through our senses, as well as through our intuition. It’s also an exploration of how universal proportions guide our understanding of creation and the dynamic dance between order and chaos.
Throughout the course of known human history, the knowledge of proportions and sacred geometry in particular, has been applied across many civilizations for thousands of years. The sophisticated knowledge of sacred geometry, especially the golden ratio, was considered highly advanced and closely related to secretive spiritual wisdom and religious traditions. As a result, its use was controlled, because it was thought that it’s misuse might have undesirable consequences. In the Western world, the knowledge of sacred geometry was so secret that it was intentionally guarded for hundreds of years and may have been purposefully forgotten or discarded.
What was known? How was this knowledge used in the past? How can it help us to understand the world around us today? As an exhibition, the aim of PROPORTIO is to re-start a contemporary dialogue surrounding the lost knowledge of proportions and sacred geometry.
PROPORTIO features specially commissioned artworks by contemporary artists, 20th century masterpieces, Old Master paintings, archaeological artefacts, as well as architectural models and a large library of historical books on proportions. All these works provide a lens to help us see what proportion can teach us about the essential design of the present and how we can use this knowledge to create a blueprint for the future. This exhibition is an opportunity to explore universal proportions and an invitation to reflect upon the interconnectedness of our universe.
Check out this small interview of Axel Vervoordt himself at the exhibition:
#GDAVenezia Axel Vervoordt presenta il progetto di «Proportio» a Palazzo Fortuny. Video di Micaela Deiana
Posted by Il Giornale dell’Arte on Thursday, 7 May 2015