As a film director, composer and actor, Charly Chaplin was obsessed with montage and rhythm. His movies are apart from hilarious, also refined, perfectionistic and thought through. The secret of Chaplin’s movies lies in the fact that he took humor very seriously. Similarly, Gijs Coenen considers concepts like playgrounds, interaction and play of great importance to his artwork. The artist creates interactive objects that are half sculpture, half play object. While applying this playfulness to his work, with the same seriousness as Chaplin applied humor to his montage, Coenen finds balance in colors, materials and functionality. Play is used as a catalyst for the artwork.
Moreover, it’s this seriousness that turns Coenen’s practice as a whole into play. For, players are always absorbed by the reality they create. Coenen uses both modern technology and crafts as tools in this gamelike, creative process. The artists hereby researches how these old and new technologies influence a contemporary design. Hence his favorite expression:’If Michelangelo had a CNC machine, what would David have looked like?’