In the dialogue with the many natural materials during Hanneke De Munck's career, a rich language of varying shapes has developed. Her love for the material's inherent character shows by the way she reacts with shape.
Her working method with movable, mouldable thick clay that animates the bronze is quite recognizable in the bronze statues, whereas her working with refined, forever stilled shapes in plaster, makes for a beautiful mature shape when cast in bronze. And a statue that has been modelled onto a framework offers great freedom of shape and structure. These plastic materials wonderfully adjust to the will of the sculptress.
For the series of modelled dancers, dragons and angels and for most portraits and loving couples bronze is the ideal material. The choice of the patina, the colour of the bronze by oxidation with etching acid, give the statue its precious finish.
Natural stone clearly has a character of its own. Much resistance has to be countered and the material asks for robust shapes whereas because of its fragility you have to proceed carefully. By its colours, the structure of its crystals and the way it breaks away during processing, the stone evokes a strong reaction in the sculptress – reminiscences of the Stone Age, the first erected stones seem to awaken. De Munck's classical themes, dancers and animal figures, are reduced to much simplified shapes: the cross, the spiral, the triangle, the arch – almost abstract as well as immediately recognisable. She has been looking to statues from antique Mexico and Colombia and to Zadkine and Henri More.