Kunstroute Alphen aan den Rijn ALPHENART, Tyvek paintings

In November 2017 I participated in the kunstroute Alphen aan den Rijn, better known as the ALPHENART event. My main contribution to this event was a statue that was displayed floating in the water of a small canal. You can read more about it in my previous blog. Besides this statue, I also made 2 paintings on a big Tyvek banner.

The local artist group STA-ART was one of the main organisers of ALPHENART and they, together with the other organisers, wanted to make some changes compared to previous years.

One of them was to promote more outdoor art pieces to better string the indoor and outdoor art locations together. Part of that plan was to provide the participating artist with a Tyvek banner that could be either painted on or, for a small fee, printed on.

These banners would then be attached to fences of several construction sites that were along the route and fill in empty spots between other outdoor art pieces like my statue. Tyvek is a synthetic material that feels a bit like smooth paper that is weatherproof. You can paint on it with regular acrylic paint.

My process for making these paintings.

I started by adding a base layer of white gesso. Then I used one of my favourite tools sponges to create an abstract art background. Using this tool always creates a lot of movement in the paint that stimulates my imagination for the later creation of my creatures.

After the paint had fully dried I used acrylic markers for the basic line work, following my intuition as I created my creatures. Next, I used my markers to colour in the figures. The last step was to add a couple layers of spray on varnish.

Now they were ready to be displayed during the kunstroute Alphen aan den Rijn. I liked working on Tyvek and both paintings held up well during the event even with several hours of rain on both event days.

Both were displayed a while longer after the event had ended. After about a week of heavy wind and rain, I did notice some cracks in the paint, particularly in the areas that I had coloured in using my metallic gold and silver markers.

For next time I will need to experiment a bit with adding more layers of varnish or using a different type to see if this would fix the problem.

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