“Weird twirls coming straight out of my brain.” Floris Hoorelbeke’s graphic abstractions

Ostend native Floris Hoorelbeke’s (1991) work blends the chaos and conversation of his daily life; working up from an instinct with the linear. It is in parts messy, glitchy, psychedelic and lively. He discusses late night art-making in Ghent and the various artistic and zine projects he has coming up ahead of his upcoming show at Sterput this Friday, where he’ll be presenting his latest work DRALALALAAILIERDRAL alongside Brussels-based publisher INFABORE, as well as perform a special live show of his noise project Death in Poestem. Don’t sleep.

At its core, what is your work about How would you describe it?

It’s basically an abstract version of my daily life. Pretty much anything I see, feel or hear is in it. It’s a multitude of imagery, scribbles, textures and shapes. My work is just as much about composition as it is about bar-hopping.

What is its starting point, and what statement do you want it to make?

Mostly, I just build a composition out of several lines, which I keep filling in until it feels just right. Sometimes I add pictures of me or my friends, or random people from magazines and newspapers. Other times, I work with epoxy resin or pair my drawings with sound. It depends on the work, really.

Can you talk to us about your approach in general?

Usually, I work at night or in the early the morning. I just keep on creating and whatever comes up becomes part of that creation. Sometimes I’ll merge several pieces together digitally, the old with the new.

What characterises your work?

Different kinds of coloured lines.

How do you actually work on a piece, from start to finish?

I just keep on working until a certain multitude arises, which gives me the freedom to filter out interesting bits and pieces that I can reuse whenever needed.

How do you see yourself fit into the country’s contemporary art scene?

I would situate myself in the margins, maybe a bit more underground. In fact, that is the place to be when it comes to contemporary art.

Talk to us about the people around you, your local scene. To what extent does it inspire and influence you?

The scene has a strong presence in Ghent. Social Harmony, for instance: the number one “off space” in town. Just watching, talking about and drinking to art – graphic as well as performative – is definitely influential to me.

Which Belgian artists do you follow, look at for inspiration? Either from the past or the present.

Karel Thienpont, Dieter Durinck, Felicien Rops, Bert Huyghe, Jeroen Wille, Chloé D’hauwe, Matthieu Ronsse, and Jonkie Moordkuil among many others.

What you are up to in the months to come?

Currently, I’m working on a big piece (7×3 m) which will be exhibited at S.M.A.K. as part of a Subbacultcha event on Wednesday 24th October. In addition to this, I regularly publish my very own zine filled with new art. Lately, I’ve been experimenting a lot with sound, which to me, combined with imagery, is fascinating. I also have another zine coming out very soon, a group show at Studio Arbor in Zottegem and a publication on INFABORE for my a launch-cum-performance on Friday 12th.

On a more personal note, how does your daily life inform your work?

My day-to-day life is obviously really important in my work. My pieces are sometimes named after my friends or even random words I come across on city streets.

And what do your parents, your family, think of what you do?

My grandma recently asked whether my drawings were weird twirls coming straight out of my brain. That’s a great sign, if you ask me.

Floris Hoorelbeke’s launch will be hosted at Sterput this Friday 12th October.
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