Christel uses oil painting to present us her lyric expressionism visions. She is a self-taught artist, based in Mechelen, Belgium. She has had a career as an executive producer in television before she discovered art as a way of expressing herself.

The island of Crete remains her major source of inspiration, along with her travel experiences. Christel has lived in Crete during the 90s and she still spends a lot of time there.

Her emotions are expressed through the language of bold colours, with laconic, solid composition and delicate texture mainly on large canvasses. Every painting is a story.

Soon after starting out she has had several exhibitions in Belgium. Lately Christel had the opportunity to present her work in Lisbon, Amsterdam, London, Venice and Madrid.

Christel Van Hemelrijck's work, a vibrant collection of abstract oil paintings, stands out due to the use of texture, colour and light.


Those textures can be observed in her earlier series titled "Rupture", mostly energetic and chaotic, where the use of a palette knife is omnipresent.


The right kind of punk attitude brings us back to her younger self with a clin d'oeil to the music scene of the late seventies and early eighties.


As a counterpart, Christel replaces black by the energetic use of plain color, red and blue observed in her more recent series. No representation of classic sceneries but an outburst of plain emotions. Overwhelming planes of monochromatic color, intrusive and captivating.  


In her latest series titled “Stories”, the backgrounds become more elaborate, more delicate and the use of a palette knife more feminine. Christel still paints with vibrance, expressing herself passionately. A different pace, new directions and new stories. Truly an artist to discover.


Frank Beekman

Beekman Foundation

APERO Catalogue - February 2020 - Illuminate

Curator Review: Four Days in Lisbon

The superbly articulated flow of reflective pattern and rich color in this work, thoroughly exudes expression. Artist Christel Van Hemelrijck offers up a subtle yet stimulating state of transcribed ‘murmuration’ in her connective piece. An almost trance-like, harmonious composition of introspection and symbolic reflection has been achieved here, and a further exploration of those narratives can be felt. Her wondrously stylized abstraction, most certainly leaves an indelible impression in the mind.

- E.E. Jacks

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