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Ton van Os (1941)

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During the last years of the twentieth century, Ton van Os created, among other things, series of works dedicated to the painter Paolo Uccello and the composer Johann Sebastian Bach.

In the last 20 years, his source of inspiration is both the music and the writings about music and visual arts of American composer Morton Feldman. Since 2000, he made more than 150 mostly large paintings black-and-white, in bright colors, in glittering silver and in sparkling gold. Paintings of space and sourceless, invented light with shifting structures and patterns in which, as the Dutch composer Anthony Fiumara wrote in his review MorTon: ‘Paradoxical themes are discussed as dynamic stasis, chaotic order, unpredictable repetition, intuitive austerity and ringing silence.’

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This is how the text on Ton van Os his site gives a description of his works and career. This is an artist who’s works are timeless, Even his earliest works from the early Seventies ( Forty Etchings book is available at http://www.ftn-books.com ) has this same abstract quality. Of course the scenes are realistic and depicts his suroundings or details from it, but this can only be seen when studying more intensely the (abstract) compositions. From a distance it is pure geometric abstraction. When you consider this the beginning of his career you can follow his artistic career with more and more abstraction over the decades…. eventually resulting in the repetition of forms in a rythm which is music inspired. http://www.ftn-books has several Ton van Os titles available.

ton van os set

 

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Keiichi Tanaami (1936)

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My first impression when i encountered this set of Tanaami posters was that these were original 60’s posters , but no….these are from ca. 2005 and strongly rooted in the Japanese culture of making prints and heavily inspired by Psychedelic Sixties posters

Born in 1936 in Tokyo, Japan, Keiichi Tanaami is an influential pop artist of postwar Japan. Tanaami took a keen interest in drawing at a very young age and often spent time in cartoonist Kazushi Hara’s studio. He studied at Musashino Art University, earning a Special Selection recognition with a major design and illustration group. Since the mid 1960s, he became increasingly interested in psychedelic culture, Acid Music, and Pop Art, in particular Andy Warhol’s work. In 1968, his award-winning antiwar poster “No More War” and his album artwork for the Monkees and Jefferson Airplane became a major impetus for the movement of psychedelic and pop art in Japan. In 1975, he became the first Art Director of Playboy (Japanese Edition), and in 1991 he started to teach at Kyoto University of Art and Design, where he is currently a chairperson of a Faculty of Information Design.
tanaami posters

There is a wonderful site on this artist which reads like a comic book and some outstanding graphic quality and yes i have 2 of his posters now available at http://www.ftn-books.com

for the site go here: https://mangadejapan.com/articles/detail/1356

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Over 200 different Art & Project items in store

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It has been almost a decade to collect as many as the 210 different Art & Project items that i currently have for sale. It started when i bought a “lot” of museum catalogues at auction and among theme were some Bulletins by this worldwide known and respected dutch gallery. Not the most famous ones , but still a nice selection with Richard Long and Hamish Fulton. I got focussed on these publications and found some rare ones at reasonable prices in a time that nobody was interested. But the big breakthrough came when i finally was lucky enough to encounter 2 nice collections. One at a local book dealer who wanted a fair price for a selection of 30 Bulletins and the second time was at auction where a lot was not sold and i decided to buy it in the aftersale of the auction house.This last one added over 80 different Art & Project items to my collection and inventory. Just have a look at http://www.ftn-books.com and search for “art & project” and you will be pleasantly surprised with the large selection that i was able to collect for FTN books.

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Gilbert & George…the N…. Sh.. pictures

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Why abbreviations for this blog title. It is because of Facebook and Pinterest censorship. They do not allow to show some more explicit great modern art because of the subject. However i must ask your attention for this great catalogue for one of the most controversial exhibitions at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.

gilbert naked shit ed

There is a life long friendship between Rudi Fuchs and Gilbert & George so it was the most natural venue for Gilbert & George to present this controversial series. Amsterdam, a liberal city had no problems with it . SO the show was held in 1996 and the catalogue published with it is one of the most collectable catalogues by this artists duo.

Rudi Fuchs wrote in his foreword:

Seeing these moving works for the first time, seeing their melancholy and sadness, I was reminded of paintings from long ago, for example Massaccio, of THE EXPULSION FROM PARADISE, Adam with his arm around Eve who was weeping, the two of them utterly lonely, going into the misery of human life. 

R.H.F.

This tells it all….controversial but beautiful and impressive

This catalogue is still available at www.ftn-books.com

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Rudolf Zender (1901-1988)

I discovered that i somehow have a soft spot for Suisse artists. Hodler is one of them is so is Gottfried Honegger. I can now add another one . Suisse Rudolf Zender lived and worked his entire life in Switzerland and made art in the style of DIE BRUCKE and the French post impressionists, but somehow managed to incorporate his own style into his subjects.

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Possibly the french influence is because he once had his own artist studio in Paris and could not miss the many french examples of Post impressionist art and its subjects.The result some great paintings and certainly great graphic art. Zender is not very well known but lookong into his biography his art is closely related to some of the best artists from the 20th century.

rudolf zender

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the 500 first Stedelijk Museum publications…A very important list

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Last Thursday i encountered finally one of the list I was hoping to find for a long time. The list is made in the beginning of the Eighties when interest rose in acquiring and collecting the Stedelijk Museum publications. Since the start in the Mid ’30s from last century, over 1100 publications have been published by the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and this list contains the numbers and titles of the first 500 numbered publications. Willem Sandberg, Piet Zwart and Wim Crouwel, 3 of the greatest of Dutch designers all can be found on this list and i noticed of the 500 titles on it I have over 400 currently available at http://www.ftn-books.com

Beside the one on the list, there are of course many others published by the Stedelijk Museum FTN books has available. Take a look, save and share this very important document. the list is in PDF format and can be downloaded with the link below:

sm lijst 1 tm 500

 

 

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Helena van der Kraan (1940-2020)

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A few days ago i learned that Helena van der Kraan had died at the age of 80.

I have encountered Helena a number of times at the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag where she had become friends with many of its staff. At many occasions these friendships grew into series of portraits and i remember at one time she made photographs of all the staff to be published in a little book which was presented to Theo van Velzen at his leaving the museum. A very kind woman she was and she will be surely remembered for her great photographs she made during her entire career.


On June 14th, on her 80th birthday, former participant and photographer Helena van der Kraan passed away. Born in Prague in 1940, she came to the Netherlands shortly after the uprising in former Czechoslovakya in 1968, for a two year residency at what was then known as ‘ateliers ’63’. There she met sculptor Axel van der Kraan, with whom she collaborated for many years on large-scale, wooden sculptures, until Helena’s artistic practice focussed more and more on photography. She is known for her restrained and tender portraits of artist friends. Her work is represented in the collections of the Rijksmuseum, the Stedelijk Museum and Museum Boijmans-Van Beuningen. In Fotomuseum The Hague, her series of teddybear photographs is on view until November 1st, 2020.

https://www.fotomuseumdenhaag.nl/nl/tentoonstellingen/beer-teddy

 

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Oskar Tröndle (1883-1945)

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The first dutch artist that springs to mind when you look at the works by Oskar Tröndle. I Julie de Graag. She woorked in roughly the same time bracket as Tröndle and there are similarities in both their works.

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But where de Graag stayeed near her home for her subjects, Tröndle has a much broader point of view. I was not very familiar with his works but they have the same quality is the de Graag’s i know. Strong graphic representation of the subject. It is the kind of art i like most.

The scarce “OT” book from the Solothurn museum is now available at http://www.ftn-books.com

OT trondle

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Reinier Gerritsen (1950)

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Reinier Gerritsen is a Street photographer “pur sang” , but i found an exception to his works as a street photographer in a book i acquired recently from the library of Total design. In this book which is now available at http://www.ftn-books.com, i noticed that his photographs were mostly staged. The book BLINDE VERRASSING is published i a small edition in 1993. The photographs look like real pictures on photographic paper, but they are actually printed on special paper. Bound with 3 screws it looks like a very special publication.

In 2008, on a hot day in May, I was walking along the Thirty-Third Street subway platform in New York City. Suddenly they were there, as if I had asked them to pose for me. Red lips, a red bag, and a red sweater. The reds all happened to be in the right place. I pressed the button several times. A blond woman stood reading One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, a look of concentration on her face; she was clearly reading a sad part of the book. My second character was intently reading Ayn Rand. Another woman was reading a book from her Kindle device. Unfortunately, Kindle does not display the cover of the book being read, so I will never know what she was reading. In the background of the photograph I took that day, you can see a man looking suspiciously into my camera.

 

You might ask: How did I get here, photographing readers on the 6 local train? It started with the financial crisis. For a few years prior, I was working on my street photography project The Europeans. The book was ready to print, but unfortunately, the crisis had depleted my funds, and I was unable to publish it. I decided to photograph the guys that caused it. I ended up on Wall Street, where I could feel the tension and hoped to capture it in my photographs. Yet people reacted in a friendly way toward my camera and me. When people questioned what I was doing in their subway, I handed them a little slip of paper that explained my project. Within a year I had gathered enough material to make a book. My American colleague Gus Powell came up with the title Wall Street Stop (2011), and provided a text, which captured the essence of what I wanted to achieve with my photographs:

Starting in 2011, this notion drove me to again photograph people reading. This has resulted in an enormous archive of images of individuals and their books, now presented here. These images constitute a document of this transitional moment — but not, one hopes, of the truly last printed book.

gerritsen blinde

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Polariteit and Polarität, 1961 exhibition

No difference in name of the exhibition. Just a different spelling. One is for the 1961 Stedelijk Museum and the other for the 19761 Recklinghausen exhibition. Both are designed by Willem Sandberg, almost identical covers and the use of different sorts of paper is equal too. …….But there is a difference. The German catalogue contains 208 pages and the dutch only 140 pages. I am still wondering if the complete exhibition was at the Stedelijk Museum or that the Recklinghaus exhibition was much more complete. I prefer the german one and i wish i could have seen this one. It is such a great exhibition and must be counted as one of the greatest exhibitions from the second half of last century.

Both catalogues are now available at www.ftn-books.com