Wouters and Frieling met in 2008 in W139, the artist run space in the centre of Amsterdam where they collaborated on a couple of art shows. In 2008 they made a book together: Vernacular Painting was published by Valiz with an essay by Ruth Noack and risographed by KNUSTin Nijmegen. In this book Frieling’s murals alternated with spreads of Wouters multicoloured lettering.
This book fell into the Hands of Belgian fashion designer Dries van Noten who was trying to create a cross-over between William Morris Arts & Crafts and 1970s Zappa psychedelics for his man’s autumn/winter collection ‘11/‘12. After seeing their book, Van Noten invited the artists to collaborate on this collection. Images of murals and lettering were printed on fabrics and they painted a mural on the full length of the Grand Palais south-east hall as a backdrop for the show.
Van Noten asked Wouters and Frieling and their assistants to continue painting while the models paraded.
Other commissions for temporary murals in Milan (for Wallpaper magazine in 2012 and Spazio Borgogno 2013) Moskou (Gorki park 2014 and Typomania festival 2019) and MUDAC Lausanne (Couture Grafique 2014) folowed. In 2018 they collaborated on Love Machine, a mural for Ine Gevers groundbreaking show Robot Love.
Since 2019 they share a studio in the Amsterdam docklands.
Frieling and Wouters share a concept of painting comparable to making music. They prepare their works as a series of successive gestures. Paints are applied in transparent layers which all have a function in the final result. There is no room for mistakes or retouches. There is no trial and error, no struggle, no stepping back. Painting is to surrender to the movements of your hands.