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An important Tajiri/Crouwel book

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It was in the earliest years of his career that Wim Crouwel was invited to design the catalogues of the van Abbemuseum and in these years several iconic publications were published that were designed by Crouwel. I have encountered over the years many of them and have a nice selection for sale at www.ftn-books.com, but until last month i never had seen the Tajiri catalogue from 1961. It was one of the earliest of Tajiri his catalogues for a major museum, but Wim Crouwel must have felt the same about the catalogue as Tajiri did. Both must have the iedea that is was important for them personally. The typography on the cover is outstanding and the photograph by Cas Oorthuys even enhances it. This is a thin 12 page catalogue with a special 4 page inlay ( with photographs of sculptures), but every page shows the quality of Wim Crouwel his design in combination with the works by Tajiri.

tajiri abbe a

 

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Piet Dirkx weekly

The First publication in which i had a contribution. Piet Dirkx was invited by the Haags Gemeentemuseum by the curators Flip Bool and  Gerrit Jan de Rook. A show held together with fellow artists Piet Dieleman, Nikolaus Urban and Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood

publication from 1986

dirkx keuze gm

 

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Otmar Alt ( 1940 )

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Otmar Alt has become over the years a famous German artist. The reason is that his art is accessibel and in his piantings and prints he depicts a fantasy world which is abstract and populated with figurative creatures. His roots can be found in the colorful world oof Pop Art painting, but over the years he developed a recognizable style of his own. You can not help but admire the commercial quality of his art. A bit the dsame as Corneille in the Netherlands developed his art into a highly commercial form of art. Helped by big companies his art was distributed among many admirers in high editions ( ABN bank ao). In the case of Otmar Alt you can see that his art was distributed among many , because on several occasion he included some nice “signed in print” prints within the books that were published. Onme of these books including the print is now available at http://www.ftn-books.com.

otmar alt b

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John Davies (1936-1999)

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“I call myself a haunted house… we all have ghosts and histories.” – John Davies

Davies’ interest in the human presence set him apart from many of his contemporaries in British sculpture at the beginning of his career. Of his early figures, often cast from life and clothed, Davies has said, ‘I wanted to make a figure, not like a piece of sculpture, more like a person…. I wanted my sculpture to be more like life in the street’.

His more recent works are modelled in clay, before being cast in polychrome polyester and fibreglass, or bronze. Davies arranges these figures in carefully choreographed relationships. Animals and inanimate objects such as houses also appear in works whose thematic concerns are always with human experience.

Of The Deerson Series, shown for the first time in this exhibition, John has said: ‘This series of scarecrow-like figures, with their moons, are a kind of self-portrait. I never intended to make these images, having other ideas to the fore, when I had a car crash in 2010. My life always leaks into my work, so inevitably and reluctantly these images emerged. They are works processing my long recovery. Now to me they seem to have a life of their own, independent of my story. Mad dancing ‘scarecrows’ coming to life, a protest against fate and physical frailty, like the figures in the Watersons’ song, ‘The Scarecrow’.’

Drawing, often in series, has always been an important aspect of John Davies’ practice, and the sculpture and drawings are equally important to him. The drawings in this installation demonstrate how the two practices influence each other.

The above text was found in Fuse magazine

http://www.ftn-books.com has some John Davies catalogues available

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John Balderssari’s pencil

A few month ago i found this great short movie on John Baldessari.

The epic life of a world-class artist, jammed into six minutes.
Narrated by Tom Waits.
Commissioned by LACMA for their first annual “Art + Film Gala” honoring John Baldessari and Clint Eastwood.

directed by Henry Joost & Ariel Schulman (supermarche.nyc)
edited by Max Joseph (maxjoseph.com/)
written by Gabriel Nussbaum (bankstreetfilms.com)
cinematography by Magdalena Gorka (magdalenagorka.com/)
& Henry Joost
produced by Mandy Yaeger & Erin Wright

 

www.ftn-books.com has some nice John Baldessari books for sale

 

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Nicolaas Wijnberg as a poster artist

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At one time Pieter Brattinga, who knew every good poster artist in the Netherlands , was asked who were the best poster designers. His answer, Crouwel, Sandberg, Treumann and Bons, but the very best was Nicolaas Wijnberg. Because his father was the director of the famous Steendrukkerij de Jong he had seen their works for some decades  being printed on the presses of his father company.  Because he had seen them all, his opinion is important and when you look at the posters by Wijnberg you can see why these were liked so much. His posters are not the ones with the beautiful clean lay-out. Nor the ones which stand out because of the use of color. No……. the Wijnberg posters are special because each of them tells a small story. This is not the poster who draws your attention for an event. The Wijnberg posters reaches out to you with a part of the performance or event. This makes you curious and therefore you will remember it.

The book on the Nicolaas WIJNBERG posters is available at www.ftn-books.com

wijnberg affiches

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Johan Antoni de Jonge (1864-1927)

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I must have been 18 years of age and my parents started to get an interest in Art and in those days the Romantic School paintings were in fashion, so my parents visited the art gallery of Leslie Smith. A yearly show at a venue near the Vredespaleis, what was used as a showroom of “classic” furniture. I remember seeing Schelfhout, Verschuur, Leickert and Weissenbruch, but what struck me most was a small watercolor by Johan Antoni de Jonge. It was cheap compared with the other works of art, but would still become much much cheaper now that the Romantic School painters are completely out of fashion. The good thing about de Jonge as an artist is that his works are not ” sweet” they have an abstract/impressionist quality and are very pleasing to look at. Timeless and depicting everyday life in the Netherlands. Scheveningen, the country side and beach scenes are among his favorite subjects. They have all one thing in common. The artistic quality is there and makes you want to participate in the scene and experience life around the turn of the century.

The book on Johan Antoni de Jonge is available at www.ftn-books.com

de jonge

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Franz Eggenschwiller (1930-2000)

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Discovering “new” artists is one of the nicer thing of writing a daily blog. And writing a blog on this artist is a pleasurable experience since i like his art .  Mix total astraction wit constructivist art and use very delicate colors and you get an impression of the art Eggenschwiller stands for. Born in 1930 het must have known the abstract painters from his generation, but this does not show. His art is original and although not very well known, deserves to be presented in exhibitions and galeries. This is one of the goals the Eggenschwiller-Wiggli foundation has set for themselves.

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Eggenschwillers works must be known with a much larger public than these are known now. Works by Franz Eggenschwiller are present in the Solothurn Museum and http://www.ftn-books.com has the most important publication on this artist available.

eggenschwiler

 

 

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Ben Sleeuwenhoek (1951)

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A painter from my generation, who i have followed now for a long time. I never have been in the opportunity to buy  a painting for our collection, but maybe…..one day the time will come and i will succeed to buy one at auction. What i like about the paintings by Ben Sleeuwenhoek is the “humor” he inserts into his abstract paintings. Drops, stones, lamps, swings …every everyday object can have its place and function in a painting and what is more ….. the color scheme he uses is very pleasing to the eye and modern, so it blends in a perfect way with may interiors.

Ben Sleeuwenhoek has regular exhibitions at the large dutch Museums and has works present in the Zeeuws Museum and Museum Boymans van Beuningen

www.ftn-books.com has some Ben Sleeuwenhoek publications available

sleeuwenhoek a.jpg

sleeuwenhoek b

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Wim Oepts (1904-1988)

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Wim Oepts , always reminds of the more abstract brother of Vincent van Gogh. The choice of colors even reminds of van Gogh and in many cases his landscapes are the same kind of Landscapes van Gogh preferred to paint. The days that Oepsts started to paint were the same days that van Gogh was finally recognized as being one of the great painters of all time. This meant that Oepts must have known his paintings very well and admired them. This also meant that he never followed the road into abstraction . His paintings were always colorful and the subjects recognizable. Friendly paintings for those who want an ” easy” work of art on the wall. Affordable certainly , artistically important? ….i doubt it.

left Oepts / Right van Gogh