Dominique de Cock's works incorporate elements like dust, air, and shadow on wax and tissue papers to capture the imprint of time. The transparent nature of these materials is akin to the idea of turning air into tangible forms: a process evoking nature's ephemeral qualities.
Her sculptures in steel wire and paper are equally fragile and react to the slightest movements.
Lately, de Cock has been studying the impact of memory on identity. Does my memory inform me, and how?
Serendipity emanates from the improbable pearl shapes that she creates when applying water to wax paper, revealed into existence by dust.
Belgian born artist Dominique de Cock began her career in Brussels by creating giant pastel drawings of dogs and elephants, works that grappled with the duality of nature’s wisdom and the banality of daily life. Exhibitions of her work followed in major galleries, including A.Monet, Mediathèque Passage 44, and Galerie Tetra.
In 1984, she was the recipient of a research grant from the TAMAT - Musée de la Tapisserie et des Arts Textiles de la Federation Wallonie, Bruxelles.
De Cock taught life drawing classes at various Brussels academies while working as a set designer for the Theatre National de Belgique, The Royal Koninklijke Schouwburg in The Hague, and the Staatstheater Stuttgart. In 1987, she presented her set design maquettes at Rouge Cloitre Bruxelles in the exhibition “Quatre scénographes “.
Moving to Long Island in the early 1990s, de Cock continued her career in stage and costume design for several theater companies, including Odd Fellows’ Productions at Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center, Bay Street Theater, and the John Drew Theater. From 1997 till 2019, she was the production designer at the East End Special Players, a special needs actor program.
De Cock was one of the founders of Ninbark International, Environmental Concepts—which received a New York State Council on the Arts Jump Start the Arts grant. The collective exhibited at the Huntington Arts Council and Ashawagh Hall in East Hampton, NY.
Moving to New York in 2010, she translated her theater and costume design experience into the fine arts by creating garment-like sculptures out of tissue paper. For her, this work stemmed from wanting to take on the challenge of exploring identity utilizing extremely light materials. Comprised of paper and steel wire sculptures, her next series, “Breath” examines the contrast between nature’s strength and vulnerability.
She created ocean-themed installations that reflect her career-long exploration of our relationship with time, memory, and nature.
These days, her focus has shifted to the land: the trees and forests threatened by drought and wildfire. She celebrates the Tree in the context of the proposed new international ecocide law*. Fragility remains a recurrent theme in her work.
In December 2020, lawyers from all over the world gathered to begin drafting a legal definition of ecocide. If they succeed, it will potentially situate environmental destruction in the same legal category as war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity.