If you ask the many photograph collectors in the Netherlands….who is the most important photographer from the 60’s and 70’s in the Netherlands?…my guess is more than 50% percent will answer…FIERET.
For the last 2 decades in his lifetime, Fieret led a secluded life, out of the way from ordinary people …feeding his pigeons on a daily basis and making drawings…many many drawings. He even locked himself up for almost a month to decorate an entire room within the Gemeentemuseum with his drawings.
But in the early sixties and seventies his main activity was making photographs. Making them from a very personal perspective and “signing” them with studio stamps all over the photo. Fieret had a keen eye and took his photographs from a different angle and perspective, making them stand out from other photo’s from these decades. Favorite of his were young woman who posed for him and of course many street scenes and thus documenting the sixties in the Netherlands. Since 15 years or so the work of Fieret has been exhibited in other countries outside the Netherlands too. the Deborah Bell gallery showed his works for the first time in the US and this catalogue a.o. is available at www.ftn-books.com
This is what Gaby Wood said about the first time she encountered the photo by Fieret:
Like most people outside Holland, I had never seen Fieret’s work before, and the Rijksmuseum’s examples are not, it turns out, all that typical. He is best known for his female nudes, but the images I saw were more ethereal. Nevertheless, I was drawn to them immediately: a large, dark print showing a milky-white little girl, blurred almost to the point of abstraction; a faded interior, so fuzzy it bordered on double-exposure; the self-portrait of a bearded man, in a style that looked barely intentional but whose subject seemed full of concentration.
The prints themselves were rough: full-bleed, manhandled and mildewed around the edges; brashly signed in fat-tipped black pen. Some of them had been stamped several times across the front: “Copyright Gerrit Petrus Fieret”, defaced and claimed at the same time. They appeared to have been discarded – not just because of their strange presentation but because they still felt feverish with experiment, as if they were pages torn from a sketchbook, or pictures of memories rather than of actual scenes.
The effect is hard to describe: photography is a realist medium – it’s not supposed to be able to sketch or imagine. But evidently, for a decade beginning in the mid-Sixties, Gerard Fieret’s work did. Looking at it in the museum it was impossible not to wonder: who was this man, and how did his pictures get that way?
I have heard that in the next few years the collection of photographs by Fieret will be travellng all over the world . If i know of dates and venues i will post them on this site.
Another great artist who i forgot to mention in my blog on Topor is Roman Cieslewicz. Cieslewicz was a long time friend of Topor , lived in Paris too and rose to fame in the sixties with his graphic design for Vogue and Elle and the posters he designed for several other events.
For the dutch his work was presented for the first time in the Stedelijk Museum in 1973 . An excellent catalogue designed by Wim Crouwel was published on that occasion. The exhibition showed the strength of this artist, because the main part of the exhibition consisted of poster designs he had made in the previous 20 years.
Cieslewicz is one of those rare artist, who in his life was far less appreciated than in these days. Graphic art students from all over the world have inquired about his books in the last few years, which shows to me his star is on the rise and soon the books on Cieslewicz will become rare collectable items.
I first heard about Topor when i was living in Paris for almost a year. It was one of these artists who was known for his illustrations and not for his Fluxus works. Later on… my idea about his works was reversed and i primarily saw him as a Fluxus artist. There were several times when i could buy his works at auction, but in only one i was successful . The remainder of the Vogtschmidt gallery was auctioned to compensate with gallery Vogtschmidt for the Karel Appels she had sold and not paid for. In the auction i bid a fair amount for a little drawing of an angel and this is still in my collection. Because it is not on the wall i decided to sell it and this made me remember Topor.
There is one Fluxus book you have to be on the look out for… SOUVENIR… a book with crossed out words so nothing can be read. Published by the Harmonie in 1975. Topor was the only person in the world who knows which text he had written and crossed out.
Arnon Grunberg made a nice biography ( incl. cd) on Roland Topor which is also for sale so please take a look at the Topor items i currently have available at www.ftn-books.com
My recent visit to Slovania reminded me of our last years visit to Vienna. We collected “Boris” our Irish Glen of Imaal terrier dog with an Austrian breeder and the time we visited her we had a three day chance to visit Vienna with its magnificent Museums.
The museum that struck me most was the Leopold museum with probably the largest Egon Schiele collection in the world. I knew the works from Schiele from different other exhibitions. There was this time, some 10 years ago, we encountered a special Schiele exhibition with his works on paper in the Guggenheim/Bilbao museum and of course the Schiele/Klimt exhibition in the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, during that exhibition i bought some excellent prints 1:1 with the original works . Schiele an artist with a very short life, but with a large production. Within my inventory i have a Marlborough gallery catalogue which shows that some 40 years ago Schiele works were still widely available and at reasonable prices, but in these crazy ART times it is different and Schiele works fetch high prices at auction.
for my blog readers i put together a special set of Postcards containing works by Schiele for only $ 12.00 including worldwide shipping. Please select the 7 postcards Schiele set and use the discount code: schiele12 and have a look at my many other Schiele items i have available at www.ftn-books.com
Yesterday morning in the V part of the Volkskrant the new graphic magazine SCRATCHES was announced with a special cover drawn by Joost Swarte. The new magazine on graphic art will be launched at the Frankfurter Buchmesse ( starts on 19/10) .Contributions by Swarte himself, Nijstad, Tak , Wasco and Herr Seele make this one of the most anticipated new magazines to be launched. The price of SCRATCHES will be eur0 29,90
for more information visit : http://scratch.pr.co/101536-uitgeverij-scratch-presenteert
Pierre Klossowski’s art has always been on the border of what is acceptable for the main stream art lover. As a viewer you almost feel always like you are intruding in an intimate scene . A little violent …and one which is drawn in delicate colors and therefore is pleasant to look at….but study it and you see what is happening and it is less pleasing
Pierre Klossowski came from an artist family and was the younger brother of the famous Balthus. You can see that they influenced each other but the works by Pierre are far more explicit as where the works by Balthus always depict a scene from which the viewer can make his own story. Klossowski was a multi talented artist who made movies and wrote essays, but his claim to fame is his drawings and sculptures which are highly recognizable and original.
From 20 September to 19 October 2006 there was a display of Klossowski’s drawings and life size sculptures made after them with sculptor Jean-Paul Réti along with the art of Hans Bellmer at the Whitechapel also presented at the Ludwig Museum in Cologne and the MNAM Paris with a film retrospective. Since, many publications have been published on this artist, but some of the earlier ones are available at www.ftn-books.comwww.ftn-books.com
Yesterday, the post on Wim Delvoye made me think about the influence Walt Disney had on art during the last 50 years. The influence must be extremely large because many of the great Modern artists from the last half century used Disney icons for their art. Wim Delvoye made me think about this relation because his signature is crafted after the original Walt Disney signature. But there is also Jeff Koons who uses Snow White and Mickey Mouse.
The skull that is in the picture is a combination between 2 iconic elements in art. The skull by Damien Hirst and the ears of Mickey Mouse. Kitsch, art and a laugh combined in one work…..beautiful ;-). Andy Warhol began making silkscreened prints of Mickey Mouse , when he realized that beside the celebrities he used for his silkscreens he made in the factory, Mickey Mouse was such a celebrity too and needed to be depicted in a large silkscreen to honor him.
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Just about a year ago the art world was surprised with a complete new amusement park. Dismaland…. a Disney inspired park by the famous Banksy in which he uses Disney themes and make these his own by making his own interpretation on these classic Disney themes and gives comments on the world around him.
Finally Keith Haring…..Haring uses the Mickey Mouse ears almost every time he makes a selfportrait. Showing that his art is rooted within the comic art of Walt Disney….great art by great artists and all inspired by the master of animation and comics…Walt Disney.
The opening exhibition at the Museum Voorlinden will be an Ellsworth Kelly exhibition. I read this morning, that there are some very special drawings of the MOMA on loan within the exhibition. An exchange granted because the Museum Voorlinden lent their best of their Broodthaers drawings to the MOMA.
The weather is extremely nice in the Netherlands the last couple of days . If the weather stays like this and if we have some time we certainly go to visit the museum and their gardens by Piet Oudolf in the coming weeks and look for ourselves at the Kelly exhibition. I know that i have met him once when he was in the Netherlands for the opening of the Spiritual in Art exhibition. He even signed a catalogue for me, but i cannot remember the person, except that this was a friendly man. Since, i only know his works from the catalogues within my inventory and the occasional painting on show in the permanent collections of the larger museums in Europe.
This will be a great occasion to finally see more of one of the best Modern Artists from the last century.
It was about 15 years ago that the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag produced some original Karel Appel lithographs and sold them through galerie Vogtschmidt in Amsterdam. All were sold but none were paid. So after a long time arguing about the payment we decided to go there ourselves and “rescue” what was left. A colleague of mine and i went to Amsterdam and chose some art from the stock of galerie Vogtschmidt and among these items was this Roland Topor drawing which i bought privately in an auction which i organized among the personnel of the Gemeentemuseum . This together with a series of prints was mine. At a fair price, but not as cheap as i hoped for , because others were bidding with me on these items. Now some 15 years later the purchase price is forgotten and what remains is the memory of the auction and the many nice items which were for sale at that time. I wish i had bid on the Henk Peeters set and the light drawing by Roland Topor but you can not have everything. and for the dutch….Martin Bril zei’ Je mist meer dan je meemaakt’
In the Netherlands many of the (special) publications were published because Topor received a lot of attention by publishers and curators. Because of this, one can regularly find nice publications, but since Fluxus is getting popular every year now, it becomes more and more difficult to find the nice ones
, but please take a look at my inventory at www.ftn-books.com and find the Topor books that i have at the moment.
A few month ago i contacted Eja Siepman van den Berg and inquired after a small statue she had made in an edition. The first contact resulted in an invitation to come and visit her in her studio in Beetsterzwaag, but because of circumstances it was impossible for us to make an appointment to visit.
Time passes and circumstances change so we finally had a chance to take some days off and decided to go to Friesland and yes …there is also the studio of Eja. We contacted each other again and found a time to visit on the 10th of august. I really looked forward to visit this fascinating artist because i never visited a real sculptors studio.
The morning of the 10th it was raining again and we run towards the entrance where we were met by Eja Siepman van den Berg. Turned to the left and walked right into the studio gallery where there was a special exhibition by a Chinese artist Xinjian Lu ( blog in a few days ), together with the statues by Eja. The abstraction of the large paintings by Xinjiang with the bronzes by Eja worked extremely well. Each showed its qualities together with the works by the other and nowhere a work dominated . I took some pictures which show just what i mean. This was a perfect setting for both artists.
After showing us the gallery and the works which were on show we soon chose our favorites and it appeared that the more abstraction was within the sculpture the more we admired it. Not that the full body sculptures were not appealing, but we thought that the sculptures with the focus on a specific body part were more abstract and had more strength
The next room, where we drank coffee, was the artist studio. Decorated with a magnificent photograph by Eja on the wall together with a work by JCJ van der Heijden.
I never knew she was a gifted photographer as well , but she explained that she made photographs during the time she had a shoulder injury and it was almost impossible for her to sculpt. The Large JCJ van der Heijden was the remainder of an exhibition which was one time held in the gallery. An extremely organized studio, with a special spot with mirrors to make the sculptures. The one that she was busy with was modelled after a photograph and in most cases Eja uses photographs to model after. Eja explained that the editions of the sculptures is protected by french law in which is stated that the maximum number of sculptures which is allowed to be made from one cast is eight. Above this number one speaks of an edition which of course can be limited too.
It takes an extremely lot of work before the final result can be shown in the gallery or museum and one can only admire the patience any sculptor must have before the final result can be shown. Sculptors must be a different kind of artist breed and one can only have the greatest respect for the path they have chosen to show their art to us…. their public.
Artist/ Author: Oliver Boberg
Title : Memorial
Publisher: Oliver Boberg
Measurements: Frame measures 51 x 42 cm. original C print is 35 x 25 cm.
signed by Oliver Boberg in pen and numbered 14/20 from an edition of 20