Benoît van Innis: Instant Light
Ann Meskens, Javier, Benoît van Innis
Posture Editions, 2020
Benoît van Innis (b. 1960) studied painting with Dan Van Severen at Sint-Lucas in Ghent. Shortly after graduating his drawings were published in De Morgen and De Standaard der Letteren. Since 1989, he has drawn 31 covers for The New Yorker. Benoît is widely known for the eight portraits he created for the tiled walls in the Brussels metro station Maalbeek. This beautiful work of art became the setting for a terrorist attack in 2016.
On Day 1 of the Belgian lockdown in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic Benoît van Innis made a drawing with a black felt-tip pen on an A4 sheet. He sent the drawing to some friends—most of them from the art world—by mail and WhatsApp.
On Day 2 of the lockdown, he made a second drawing and again he sent it to his friends and acquaintances. The response was overwhelmingly positive. The drawings were shared on social media and dS Weekblad published an interview and five drawings. The protagonist in these drawings is the artist himself, who reacts to the exceptional situation departing from his own universe.
The book Instant Light compiles the entire series of drawings Benoît made in his studio in Brussels. They feature all his favourite subjects: painting, Club Brugge, literature, the world of art and French chanson.