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Op Losse Schroeven by Wim Crouwel

Yesterdays blog was on the “OP LOSSE SCHROEVEN” exhibition. A breathtraking and important exhibition on Conceptual Art at the Stedelijk Museum. Poster and catalogue design by Wim Crouwel and while preparing the blog i found a page in the book  IN AND OUT of AMSTERDAM ( also available at www.ftn-books.com ) which explains the story of the exhibition and even mentiones the poster by Wim Crouwel.

Here is the page from the book:

schroeven in and out

 

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Rini Hurkmans

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From the beginning of her career, Rini Hurkmans is concerned with topics such as absence, loss, disruption, alienation and the related concepts of safety, security, identity and compassion.
This can be perceived in the photo series Pietà, in the films Dear Son, The Flavor of Salt and Don Quixote but also in the sculptures The White Shroud and The Inner Garden.
Life, art and politics are intertwined in a continuous dialogue and each specific period requires its own thoughts, strategies and forms. Hurkmans initiated the conceptual artwork Flag of Compassion in 2002 out of the desire to go beyond the framework of cultural consensus and consumption. Since 2008, she is an advisor to the Unda Foundation, the foundation that manages the artwork and also organizes a series of

Making Waves events around themes related to Flag of Compassion. By engaging with the Flag, it is investigated how a work of art can activate ethical questions in society and how it can function both within the arts and in society. Hurkmans is the driving force behind the book Compassion. A Paradox in Art and Society (Valiz, 2017) in which Flag of Compassion is discussed as a case study.
She is currently conducting further research into the concept of loss in relation to ethics and politics and is developing new work based on her working period as Artist in Residence at the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome in 2019. Her research into the press photo she bought in 1992, and which inspires her work ever since, of the moment Michelangelo’s Pietà was attacked in 1972, serves as the starting point for the work in progress.

www.ftn-books.com has one interesting Rini Hurkmans title available

hurkmans

 

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Marcelle van Bemmel (1948)…Fantastic photography

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To be honnest…i did not know  Marcelle Van Bemmel until i recently discovered and purchases an nice catalogue on het fantastic photography from 1986. It shows the qualiteis in which she excells. Living in Rotterdam it can not ne coinsidence that many staged photography is being made . Many photographers are making staged photography as an art form ( Henk Tas ao) and van Bemmel is one of them.

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The photographs make you guess and wonder  why these objects, forms and figures were in a way that emotions are aroused. Humor, darkness and phantasy all are fighting to concur your mind. The book is available at http://www.ftn-books.com

marcelle van bemmel

 

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Servie Janssen (1949-2018)

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Servie Janssen (1949-2018) Dutch artist studied in the Kraków Academy of Fine Arts in 1971. His connection to Poland ran through his whole career as a passionate artist and performer. On the 14th of July 2018 in a conversation between Servie Janssen and Nell Donkers, Janssen mentioned the influence and his close relation to the artistic movement constructivism, and especially to Kazimir Malevich. In the same conversation Servie Janssen emphasized that he finds the publication “Pier+Ocean: Construction in the art of the seventies” (Arts council of Great Britain, 1980) the most important.
After “I Am” and “Works and Words” Janssen also took part in the international exhibition Construction in Process (Konstrukcja w Procesie) in 1980 in Łódź, Poland. He wrote in an email: “What strikes me about Poland is that this line of constructivism that started with Kazimir Malevich and Henrik Stazewski – in no other former Eastern Bloc country you will find this in such a way – (Stazewski was a member of the honorary committee for Konstrukcja w Procesie) – and they saw in my 9 rectangles work a promising link to current events, all the more so since a whole generation of conservatives were still finding their way, in a kind of surrealism and absurdism in art (especially graphic artists).” The documentation of his 9 rectangles performance (the one he performed in Works and Words) was exhibited and he performed “This side is Red” during which he read titles of Friedrich Nietzsche’s works while lying on the floor next to a neon sign.
Janssen held a performance combined with an exhibition in De Appel in 1978. Art critic, Marga van Mechelen in her book “De Appel 1975-1983” writes that Janssen’s performance was influenced by his journey to Canada.
Later, as Louwrien Wijers writes in a witness report, Janssen’s artistic development was defined by his interest in shapes in space. In Works and Words Servie Janssen held a performance in the Kapel venue on the 26th of September in 1979. During the performance Janssen repeatedly built and deconstructed structures of wooden sticks, originally in the shapes of 9 rectangles.

www.ftn-books.com has a copy of the scarce Servie Janssen publication from 1978

servie janssen

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Marina Abramovic and Ulay (6)

https://youtu.be/2TlZjFGriLw

 

This video says it all. One of the most powerful art performances ever.

Passionate, pioneering and powerful, these are the three most apt words to sum up the work of Ulay and Marina Abramovic. Proof that they were destined for romance, the couple even share the same birthday. Referring to one another as “the other” and “parts of a two-headed body”, their synchronised creativity resulted in over a decade of collaborations that explored themes of ego and artistic identity. Not all love lasts forever, though, and the two parted ways with one last collaboration. Entitled “The Great Wall Walk”, this final partnership saw Abramovic and Ulay separated by China’s Great Wall, where they went to meet in the middle for one last goodbye.

 

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Jan Vercruysse (1948-2018)

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Inspired by yesterdays blog on Niek Kemps, this one is about Jan Vercruysse, who , together with Kemps, were presenting their art on the Venice Biennale in 1993. The Belgian conceptual art scene lost one of his most important members in 2018 when Vercruysse died unexpectedly. He refused to participate in the DOCUMENTA IX, because he had completely different ideas how art should be presented. Art was made into a spectacle by Jan Hoet and vercruysse thought different about presenting his art.

kemps ven a

He was the complete the opposite of Jan Hoet, who thought art was a spectacle, where Vercruysse stood for a much more contemplative form of art.  This is reflected in his art which dooes not impress by its colors or forms , but intrigues and makes you study the setting and objects. Both the catalogues http://www.FTN-books.com has available show this in an excellent way.

 

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Betsabee Romero (1963)

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Cars and Tyres. These are the two elements that appear in Romero’s art practically all the time. Covered tyres, ripped tyres, flat tyres……..

This art reminded me of a story my wife told me. The first time she visited New York she was at the Museum of Modern Art and visited a room filled with tyres, she turned around …..she could not understand how this could be art. Since a lot has she changed and we both visited many museum and galleries and even the most extreme art is appreciated. I wonder if she returned to MOMA if she would think the same about the art presented to her. This not an easy form of art which can be consumed like fast food. You have to study the artist a little and when you finally see her art for real it impresses.

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Her work can be seen as her response to the issues and problems that she witnesses in the world around her> She succeeds impressively in interweaving reality at the local level with reflections on global developments. The CARS AND TRACES catalogue is now available at www.ftn-books.com

betsabee romero

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Andy Goldsworthy (1956)

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Andy Goldsworthy, British sculptor, photographer, environmentalist,  seems like a perfect choice for his personal quest is to be intimate and create with Nature. What flows through him, flows through the landscape and his goal is to feel, experience,  understand,  and then to create with this energy.

In his collaborations with nature, Andy works with whatever comes to hand: twigs, leaves, stones, snow and ice, reeds and thorns, creating site-specific installations, exploring the very essences of these materials.  In his process, he first must become attuned to his environment mentally, physically, and emotionally.  He listens, he observes, and then when he seems to be drawn to the way the materials express themselves he creates.  He takes these very materials and reweaves them back into the environment in a deliberate manner then lets the effects of the natural conditions have their way with them.  For example, near a stream, he sews together leaves with pine needles and allows the current to carry them as if it were a new inhabitant making its way in the flow.  Another example he creates a structure from sandstone or shale at the sea’s edge then observes how the tide interacts with it, carries it away, melts it, or simply flows over it.  In this manner, he is exploring change, transformation, mutability, permeability, the unknown and impermanence.

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As an audience, we feel the sense of birth, life and death with great anticipation and curiosity and a sense of triumph.  Andy will photograph his process and this is mainly the only means he has to show that he actually created and collaborated with nature.  There are exceptions such as rock walls he constructs but even they will not stay as he created them.  So, the photographing of his installations tell the story, a small drama as it were.  And he is always uncertain of the exact metamorphoses of his pieces.  On film he captures the infancy stages of creating them, the majestic full bloom of the mature piece, and then the decline and demise that comes with time.

His works of our art are not for eternity, but because he documents them extremely well, video’s and photographs remain and are proof that at one time the work existed and amazed those who saw it in reality. www.ftn-books.com has the much sought Staatsbosbeheer publication for sale.

goldsworthy staats a

 

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Stedelijk Museum “on line” visits

Blog readers know of the large collection i have for sale on the Stedelijk Museum, its artists and its exhibitions ( http://www.ftn-books.com), but it is hard to grow this collection . No book markets, no museum visits and the only thing i could do is to photograph and describe my stock and add this to my inventory. It has now grown over by 1100 entries and i am convinced it is one of the largest collections for sale on the Stedelijk Museum and itss history. But to bridge the time between closure and reopening its collections to visitors, they made available some interesting virtual visits to the museum and its collections. Guided by curators and director Rein Wolfs , you can now make a virtual visit. One of the best i think is the one Rein Wolfs hosts. It shows the direction into which the Stedelijk is developing for the next decade or so. Interesting…. yes…., but i do hope they still will keep their focus on their history and great collection, they build over the years.

 

 

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Koninklijke Subsidie voor vrije schilderkunst, 1986

year 1986

vrije foto 1986

from left to right: Jan van den Dobbelsteen, Michiel Duvekot, Steven Aalders, Bart Domburg, Diederick van Kleef, Gerard Kodde