acquisition Kees van Urk

5 april 2016

Museum De Lakenhal acquired a pastel from 1920 by the artist Kees van Urk. A 'fiery' tree takes center stage in this pastel sketch of a stirring landscape. The artist also devoted considerable attention to the the stormy sky. Van Urk trained at the Royal Academy of the Visual Arts in The Hague. He was aslo a member of the Leidsche Kunstclub De Sphinx, a Leiden artist group set up by Theo van Doesburg in 1916. He was appointed the groups chairman in 1917, a position he would hold until 1920. Van Urk belonged to the modern artists within De Sphinx. The influence of Van Gogh, Jan Sluijters and artists from mystical groups such as de Branding is evident in his work. Theo van Doesburg was an admirer, even if he did not always consider Van Urk's work as entirely modern.
Van Urk lived in Leiden until 1920. He was an idealist, a conscientious objector and a commited socialist. He developed an interest in eastern philosophies and later became a Rosicrucian.

Kees van Urk, Untitled (1920)
Kees van Urk, Untitled (1920) collection Museum De Lakenhal, acquisition 2016