Robbie Cornelissen is one of the leading contemporary draughtsmen in the Netherlands. Cornelissen has established a reputation for the monumental, architectural drawings that he has been creating since the early 1990s. In these detailed pencil drawings of libraries, waiting rooms, factory buildings, circus arenas and shopping centres he plays with transitions and connections between indoor and outdoor space. The large format of the drawings, sometimes four metres wide, almost invites the beholder to ‘enter into’ the work.
Cornelissen, who initially trained as a biologist, did not start drawing until later in life, attending the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam in the 1980s. He believes his background in biology has benefited his art. His work depicts ‘inner worlds’, taking the viewer on a journey through the artist’s memories and thoughts. Thanks to his knowledge of the human body, Cornelissen knows exactly how the complex cellular system inside us fits together. Though he uses this knowledge, his drawings do not refer to the human body. The spaces he depicts are mental spaces, metaphors for the human mind. Recent solo exhibitions include God is in the Details at the Stedelijk Museum Kampen (2013), Het grote geheugen X at the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag (2011) and Studio Vertigo at the Centraal Museum, Utrecht (2011)