Maarten Vanden Eynde

Raid Projects, Los Angeles, US (2007)

Raid Projects, Los Angeles, US (2007)

The first visual manifestation of human presence and expression of individual mark-making was the creation of hand stencils – negative handprints made in chalk on cave walls or mountain slopes. This territorial behaviour has, in the modern urban environment, evolved into graffiti and tags. 'Contemporary Cavepaintings' employs the same iconography to reintroduce the application of basic signatures to delimit territory and preserve human presence forever. Modern city ‘caves’, such as hideouts under bridges or abandoned parking lots, were marked by spraying white spray-paint over a hand on the wall. This left an empty space, a negative being, a human void. The gesture questions originality and authenticity and visualises the quest for the consolidation of human presence in the environment.