Van Straaten (born in 1963) should be called an artist of balance always searching for harmony between force and movement in combination with space. Because of the wide range in his art-education he has mastered the art of drawing, painting and sculpting technology. However, the classical plastic art of sculpture and modelling opens up the possibility for him to create his own language of sculpture in answer to his urge for art.
Due to this style of sculpting, the preference for bronze is natural.
Van Straaten creates bronze sculptures in which he unites force and movement.
Sculpture is an experience of space combined with the challenge of the three-dimensional. The tension of space and movement are the themes, which he expresses in his sculptures. Summary it can be said that the power of life and being, the feeling and emotion by force and movement will be converted into matter. The experience of space is being expressed in the shapes and characters in each sculptures. His sculptures of bulls express explosive power while the horses find their strength in being elegant. Each sculpture recalls this way their own association and serves as a metaphor for a certain emotion. Feelings, which has inspired the artist for each sculpture.
Looking at the works of this artist, it becomes very clear that one of his most important sources is his background in art history. The Renaissance period as well as several Italian artists served as inspiration to Frans as a sculpture. For instance the expressions in Leonardo da Vinci’s artworks, and also Giovanni Bologna’s dynamic form and shape.
One of his preferences is the intriguing contradiction of movement and suggestion of zero gravity.
In many sculptures the artist plays tricks with the onlooker’s imagination in his constant quest to present an explosive, powerful movement, frozen in time. Inspired by the before-mentioned artists he became a sculptor who creates harmonic, authentic bronze sculptures of a very high quality. Van Straaten is known in Europe as an artist who produces sculptures in both traditional and original styles. Because of the difficulty of combining both styles he sculpts in either category. Muscle reflex and anatomy force themselves to graceful abstract parts, in which each line and surface plays its own part. The highly expressive sculptures are very powerful and elegant, playing tricks with our emotions, and presenting themselves in a three dimensional space.