There will be approximately 15 mixed-media works (colour lithographs and acrylic painting, on fine archival paper); each work is 30” x 40” before framing. The works are named serially, “Morphogenetic Field No 1”, “Morphogenetic Field No 2”, and so on. As well, as a centerpiece for the show, there will be a large painting on canvas, entitled “Release,” which has been created in 2008 over the course of several months using Bikkers’ painstaking micro-brushstrokes and complex layering.
There is a marked consistency of project and sensibility that connects the dots of the graceful trajectory that is Rudolf Bikkers’ unique art. But the subject matter of his dreamings of the bio-fantastic has evolved. The preoccupation in earlier work tended to be with the inner life of the microscopic organism, including morphogenesis (intra-organism biological processes that generate tissue shape and biological form in plant and animal embryos). In the last several years, Bikkers has become fascinated by hypotheses that morphogenesis may either exist as a phenomenon, or be extended as a metaphorical idea, beyond the physical to the psychic realm and beyond the single organism to inter-organism connectedness. Influenced by the ideas and writings of biologist and philosopher Dr. Rupert Sheldrake, Bikkers’ new series of work engages the premise that “morphogenetic fields” may explain how knowledge can be transmitted between organisms and why behaviour based on that knowledge can be quite suddenly widely emulated within a species, despite there being no known physical connection or communication linking an initial setting (in which knowledge and associated behaviour are first generated) and a new setting (in which they appear, inexplicably, to be replicated). At their most far-reaching, hypotheses of “morphic resonance” postulate not only spiritual interconnections between beings but also the cumulative development of a collective consciousness as morphogenetic fields interact – with existing fields folding into emerging fields and new fields building on older ones.
Rudolf Bikkers is a Toronto-based printmaker, painter, and Professor of Printmaking at OCAD. Born in Hilversum, the Netherlands, his arts education involved both the visual arts and music.