The Kunsthal Rotterdam has developed a new programme entitled Kunsthal Light. This programme focuses on creating opportunities for talented artists with an international background or a double nationality. Kunsthal Light will be putting the spotlight in particular on ‘modern muralists', and urban, graffiti and comic artists. Three times a year for a period of eight weeks, the Kunsthal will be making the display window along the museum's front slope available to an artist who is free to adorn the area as he or she wishes. The glass wall of the display window allows the general public to view the artists' work from outside the museum. For the first edition of Kunsthal Light earlier this year, American artist Ben Merris made a specially designed Cave Painting. The South African artist Suzanne Opperman has been invited for the next edition in November.
Nacho Simal, born in 1974, is originally from Zaragoza and lives and works in Barcelona. Simal is co-founder of the art collective Estudiosos del Tema (ET, 2001), which brings together comic art, visual art (including video art) and electronic music. ET has been a foundation and publishers since 2008. Their main publication is the comic art magazine La Cruda, which publishes work by a wide range of international artists including several from the Netherlands.
The Dutch collective Lamelos exhibited at the ET Gallery in 2010. The work by this artistic quartet blends in seamlessly with the enigmatic worlds created by Simal. Simal draws views of endless landscapes inhabited by strange types of plants and animals such as an elephant looking for a hand with which to pluck fruit from a tree, and a penguin going on a polar expedition in Wellington boots. The people in his drawings, however, appear unable to move as they are carried unconscious by animals or are stuck, buried up to their neck in the ground. Simal sometimes illustrates a situation or sequence of events in a series of drawings from various perspectives.