In the autumn of 2017, Sabrina van den Heuvel was appointed as artist-in-residence at the Dutch University Institute for Art History (NIKI) in Florence. During her time in the city, she was inspired by the natural surroundings of Florence and Rome, the remains of classical antiquity in Tivoli and the masterpieces of Caravaggio and Michelangelo. The poetry of the latter was also an importance source of inspiration. It was here that she created her series Corpus Dei, Divine Body. The man who embodies Corpus Dei for Van den Heuvel is a model plucked from the street, Jacopo.
Edwin Becker, chief curator of exhibitions at the Van Gogh Museum: ‘Sabrina is able to use a subtle technique to surprise the viewer with beautiful black-grey-white transitions, whereby photography almost becomes painting and drawing. Her series Corpus Dei is a collection of exciting and challenging compositions that combine her feeling for drama with a timeless aesthetic and with characters that really touch your soul.’
Corpus Dei brings emotional themes such as ecstasy, happiness and desire to the fore in a striking way. As such, the series of photos connects visual art with fashion and poetry to create a total concept.