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van Gogh and Ruscha by David B.

It was a few days ago that David B. published on Facebook some photographs he had taken. Without knowing  where these were taken I immediately ralized that these could have been made some 50 even 120 years ago.

I refer to the Hollywood sign paintings by Ed Ruscha and the landscapes around Arles by Vincent van Gogh.

Without knowing, we have learned to look at objects, landscapes and forms like we are our own artists and  these observations must have influenced us in the way we look at the world around us and take and create our own art with the many pictures we nowadays can take with camera’s and phones. It even proves that art is important for those who have an open mind towards it. Learning from the art and artists they have encountered in museums and galeries, to create their own interprations of the world around them.

http://www.ftn-books.com has some very nice Ruscha and van Gogh titles available.

 

 

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Mark Kadota (1951)

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A video, performing, sculptor and painter, artist Mark Kadota splits his time between his homes in Hawaii and the Netherlands. “Living in two very different places allows a unique observation of each place with a new and fresh view.It also lets me get a different perspective of each place,” he says. Kadota’s art covers visual recording and performing arts in the broadest spectrum. He has been on exhibit in galleries throughout the world and his collections are to be seen in several museums in Europe and Hawaii.His video artworks have been shown at the Beijing and London Olympic exhibition halls and have been acquired by Stedelijk museum in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Netherands. Appointed the honorary city artist for Honolulu USA he is presently finishing a commission for the renovation of the Honolulu city hall

In his Dutch landscape series Kadota updates the concept of documenting landscapes void of any human content in an effort to find spaces of refuge in an age of overpopulation. His main motivation is to create artwork of universal languages, searching for common truths that unite rather than separate. His artwork, at its best, mirrors society and our interior selves, raises questions, and presents communication and reflection. He makes his messages human, poetic, inclusive, humorous, accessible and comprehensible to everyone. As a conceptual artist, Kadota uses both traditional and non-traditional media to explore idea which he expands upon using video, painting, photography, installations, performance, movement, music, poetry, kinetic stage sets, sculpture, ceramics and film. Like many artists he tends to work in series. Kadota cites “I explore the concept through the series of work till I exhaust the idea. Usually I move to the next concept and at times return to former concepts with newfound ideas.”

kadota

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Georg Gerstner (1928-2019)

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Georg Gerster is considered as one of the true masters of Aerial photography and the best way to prove this is to have one look at the series he made for Swissair. This is sheer brilliance and all posters feature a photograph which you must study first to understand. In many subjects there is a form of abstraction , but the reality is it is just  a compostion from a photograph taken from high above the subject. He started this way of Photography in 1963 and visited over 100 countries to make his fantastic photographs. He is considered as one of the pioneers in this metier  and will be remembered for many “classic’ aerial photographs

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Between 1971 and 1996 the swiss master of aerial photography Gerster created 60 poster for swissair, together with graphic designer Emil Schulthess, Hans Frei or Karl Gerstner.

He was born in Winterthur, Switzerland, on April 30th, 1928 and studied classical languages at his local grammar school, before reading German and English at Zurich University, where he also received his doctorate. From 1950 to 1956 he was science editor of the Zurich Weltwoche. Since 1956 he has been a freelance journalist specializing in science reporting and aerial photography. He has undertaken extensive visits to every part of the world, including Antarctica.

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By pursuing this line of reasoning, Georg Gerster has turned aerial photography into something more probing, something that, with luck, may prove a contemplative, philosophical instrument encouraging greater reflection.

His way of viewing the world has caught on and found many imitators. Georg Gerster consoles himself with the thought that imitation is still the sincerest form of flattery.

For two decades Georg Gerster’s aerial photographs for Swissair’s posters and calendars had contributed substantially to the airline’s image.

Gerster worked on a regular basis for the Neue Zürcher Zeitung and the Washington-based National Geographic Magazine. Today he works for the Swiss online news platform Journal21. Further his works are known among Photography- and Artlovers and are part of several Art Portfolios.
Georg Gerster died 90 years old, outside Zurich on February 8th, 2019. 

gerstner swissair

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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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ART Museum announcements

It has been a long time hobby of mine to collect and take with me the announcements for the planned exhibitions at the museums I visit. In the past 25 years, I have collected some of the most wanted announcements. Among them Basquiat, Erwin Olaf and Niki de Saint Phalle and Jean Tinguely. What makes these folders stand out is that in many cases their design is done by the designer who is also responsible for the exhibition catalogue. It is if you are looking at a miniature version of the exhibition catalogue. http://www.ftn-books.com has some of the mentioned exhibition folders at this moment available.

 

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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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Stedelijk Museum Schiedam and COBRA

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Most art lovers abroad do not know that within a distance of 10km of the Boymans van Beuningen Museum in Rotterdam, another great museum can be found. The museum itself much …much smaller…. but for its collection it deserves to be mentioned beside the Boymans. the STEDELIJK MUSEUM SCHIEDAM has had its collecting focus during the last 30 years on Cobra and The INFORMELEN and Zero art and build a collection which must be visited.

Situated in an old building in the center of Schiedam it is now being renovated to present its Cobra collection in the best way possible. So make a mental note when you are visiting Rotterdam. Take the tram to Schiedam and visit its collection when it opens again after the renovation. The following Stedelijk Museum Schiedam books are available at http://www.ftn-books.com

cobra schiedam

 

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Toon Michiels (1950-2015)

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Among the many many titles on art and design that i now have for sale. Quite a number is designed by Toon MIchiels, who was the ‘House” designer of the Avenue magazine. Beside his designs he was also known for his documentary photography, often combining both disciplines into a very personal publication His publication on a farmer couple in Brabant, ” ZELDZAME MENSEN”, was such a publ;ication . The publications got critical praise and the photographs reminded people of the farmer scenes they knew from the van Gogh paintings.

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The reason of this blog is the find of a very nice publication i found at the local bookmarket . It is the book published together weith the Toon Michiels exhibition at the  DE BEYERD museum in 1991, which is now for sale at http://www.ftn-books.com.

toon michiels

 

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Nasreen Mohamedi (1937-1990)

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There are not that many artists that have emerged from India and made a name for their selves in western art, but Nasreen Mohamedi is certainly one of them. Crown on her exhibition history was the REINA SOFIA exhibition in 2014 ( book available at http://www.ftn-books.com ). At this occasion, a large number of her line drawings and paintings were for the first time to be seen in Europe and with this exhibition she established her self as being one of the truly visionary original artist coming from outside the western art world.

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Born in Karachi in 1937, before moving to Mumbai in her youth, and living and teaching in Vadodara until her final days, Mohamedi remains one of the most under-recognised artists of the 20th century. At the time when Indian Modernists were painting the colours and chaos of their homeland, Mohamedi worked alongside peers such as MF Husain, Tyeb Mehta and VS Gaitonde. Yet she was virtually alone amongst her peers because she broke away from the mainstream practice of figurative painting in post-Independence India. She has often been compared to Canadian abstract painter Agnes Martin and American minimalist Carl Andre. “‘Nasreen Mohamedi’ reveals the artist’s significant contribution to Modernism that expands the boundaries of Western art history and offers an opportunity to reconsider the meaning of abstract art,” reads the exhibition note. Mohamedi passed away at 53  in 1990, from a rare neurological disorder.

The obscurity in relation to the chronology and description of Mohamedi’s works have confounded curators and art historians. Her evolving language is seen through early abstract brushwork and figurative oil and watercolour, to her grid-based drawings and those in pen and ink.

While her line drawings are the most popular aspect of her oeuvre, what is also fascinating is Mohamedi’s photographic prints, known for their unique architectural quality. A well-travelled artist, Mohamedi took photographs in several places in the Middle East (she lived in Bahrain briefly in her youth), the US and Japan, apart from various cities in India including Chandigarh. her photographs, which highlight geometric shapes and lines in her surroundings through particular crops, mirrored how Mondrian began his path to abstraction, a reason why the two exhibitions will open simultaneously.

Another significant aspect is Mohamedi’s diaries, which reveals the artist’s mind at work. On display at Tate Liverpool are extracts, notes and source material she kept in her studio.

mohamedi

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Lee Boltin ( 1917-1991 )

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I know of some dutch photographers who specialize in photography of art objects and catalogues. There are Gerrit Schreurs and Erik and Petra Hesmerg of course, but i had never heard of Lee Boltin. Reading about him i learned that he photographed one of the most iconic exhibitions from the 20th Century. Boltin documented the Tutanchamon exhibition and its objects. This was new to me , because the reason of this blog was a recent addition on signs and other letter related photographs he made during the Fifties in his home town New York. I liked the book and its photographs and beside being a historical document it is also a highly collectable book from a great photographer. so i bought it and it is now for sale at www.ftn-books.com

Mr. Boltin photographed several important exhibitions and collections, including the contents of the ancient Egyptian king Tutankhamen’s tomb for the book “Tutankhamen: The Tomb and Its Treasures” in 1977, and the Nelson A. Rockefeller collection, which was the subject of “Masterpieces of Primitive Art,” published in 1978.

Born in New York City in 1917, Mr. Bolton trained at the American Museum of Natural History, where his early photographs focused on pre-Columbian and Eskimo art. In 1954 he left the museum to work on his own. His photographs have appeared in museums around the United States and in Europe, as well as in art books and other publications.

boltin jail keys