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Charlotte Posenenske (1930-1985)

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The works of Charlotte Posenenske (Wiesbaden, 1930-Frankfurt am Main, 1985) consist of series in an unlimited edition. According to a number 0f rules, they can be made and repeated – also by others – and combined with each other. With her radical and ‘democratic’ ideas about material, production and authorship, Charlotte Posenenske influenced and shaped conceptual and minimalist art of the sixties.

Minimalist series

Charlotte Posenenske began as a painter, but she felt limited by the flat surface and soon moved on to creating spatial works. The forms of Series B (1967) are hung as reliefs on the wall, but also placed as objects in the spatial environment. This is followed in 1968 by Series D and Series DW, whose format and shape are reminiscent of ventilation shafts.

Participation

Although Charlotte Posenenske did not consider herself to be a political artist, she had a clear and strong vision of societal relations, which in her view had to be rational, concrete, accessible and democratic. With her work she wanted to set a standard for this: the materials which she used like cardboard and steel are cheap, the works are sold for a fixed low price and the assembly and installation of her modular systems can be done by ‘everyone’: buyers, exhibition makers, and even the public. Posenenske’s social engagement is also expressed through the installations she created in public spaces, such as airports, train stations, conference rooms and on the street.

Contemporary artists and Posenenske

Disappointed in the social scope of art, Charlotte Posenenske left the art world in 1968 to study sociology. Her work and views remain however points of reference for younger generations of artists. The text above comes from the Museum Kroller Muller site. This Museum has a retrospective exhibition on Posenenske until the 15th of September

www.ftn-books.com has some nice publications in which Posenenske made some contributins. Since there is a longtime connection between the Netherlands  and the artist it happens that some of the most important publications have been published in the Netherlands. Specially the former Art & Project has presented her works on several occasions.

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Desiree Dolron (1963)

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Without a doubt Desiree Dolron is one of the stars of dutch photography from the last 2 decades. Dolron works like a painter in her compositions in which “light” and “shades” are key factors.

These pictures are very pleasing to look at, although they also have drama within their composition. Dolron is now well known all over the world.

At one time i owned a small photograph by Dolron. The print was published inan edition of 300 copies and distributed by the RABO bank. It was a very affordable print, but when i noticed a few years later that these prints were being sold at ridiculous prices a decided to sell it and i have never regretted it. Her photographs are impressive and beuatiful but when you own one and look at it for 5 years i lost interest in it. The photograph is what it is, an extremely nice photo, but for me personally without any extra depth.

www.ftn-books.com has some nice Dolron books available

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Hap Grieshaber (1909-1981)

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Hap Grieshaber is one of the great graphik artist from the 20th Century.

Personally i consider Hap Grieshaber, H.N.Werkman and Josua Reichert to be the top in graphic artists from the 20th century. Reichert is the best, but Grieshaber and Werkman are close in second spot.

Grieshaber is a typical 50’s /60’s artist. The first time i encountered his works i had a strong asscociation with the Catholic bid prints, inserted and collected in bibles by young people in the early 60’s.

But there is so much more to be discovered in his works than simple figures. The combination of abstract patterns in the background of slhouetted figures are typical Greishaber and make the composition to appear totally abstract. Willem Sandberg was a Grieshaber admirer and together they made one of the most iconic of all Sandberg / Stedelijk Museum catalogues

grieshaber cata a

This and other Grieshaber publications are available at www.ftn-books.com

Grieshaber was honoured with numerous prizes and retrospective exhibitions. He exhibited works at the documenta in 1959 and 1964. In honor of his 70th birthday in 1979, large retrospectives were shown in various museums in both parts of Germany. The last prize that Grieshaber was awarded in 1980 was the art prize of the town of Konstanz. Grieshaber died in 1981 in Eningen unter Achalm aged 72 years.

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Lawrence Weiner (1942) + discount

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Lawrence Weiner and the Netherlands is a combination which now exists for almost 50 years. His connections with dutch directors and curators is legendary and he has made several special projects with them in dutch. Weiner is considered as a post minimal artist and one of the founders of Conceptual art and that is the reason why his works blend so well within the collections of the more important dutch museum. The van Abbemuseum, Stedelijk and Gemeentemuseum have all works by Weiner in their collections.

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But Weiner is much more than a conceptual artist. He is a book designer and poet at the same time  and these little sketches with words can be blown up into facades and objects with words. One of the most memorable to me was the facade at the Ljubljana Modern Art museum with a Weiner object on one of the outside museum walls. Impredssive, recognizable. So to celebrate the longtime history that Lawrence Weiner has with the Netherlands there is a discount this week of 10%  on all items at www.ftn-books.com . use the discountcode : LawrenceWeiner10 and receive a 10% discount on all items including some marvelous Lawrence Weiner publications.

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Joseph Semah (1948)

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Joseph Semah is an israel/dutch artist who has been working the main part of his artistic life in the Netherlands. His works can be found in the Stedelijk Museum collection.

Artist Joseph Sassoon Semah was born in Baghdad (Iraq), where his grandfather Hacham Sassoon Kadoori (1885-1971) was the President of the Babylonian Jewish community. With his parents Joseph Semah was ’displaced’ to the State of Israel in 1950. In the mid-1970s Semah decided to leave Israel, describing this as a form of self-imposed exile. He lived and worked in London, Berlin and Paris. Since 1981 he has resided in Amsterdam. He regards himself as a ‘guest’ in the Western (art) world.

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Reading into works of art using his native-language Hebrew as the framework, Semah signals a lack of knowledge about Judaism. He believes Jewish layers of meaning are not given enough attention in art history and feels compelled to rectify this: to fill the ‘empty page’. His extensive oeuvre consists of drawings, paintings, sculptures, installations, performances and texts.

www.ftn-books.com has some nice Semah titles available

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Marcel Mariën (1920–1993)

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Marcel Mariën was a Belgian artist, he was born in 1920 in Antwerp and died in 1993 in Brussels. During his childhood, Marcel Mariën faced big difficulties at school since he attended a school where the classes were imparted in Flemish. When he turned 15, he joined, as an apprentice, the atelier of a photographer who taught him all the foundations of photography. He joined in parallel the Superior Popular School for the workers, which led him to discover Rene Magritte’s work. A year later, he became interested in Surrealist paintings and started to write poetry. In 1937, Marcel Mariën went to Brussels to met Rene Magritte, Paul Colinet, Louis Scutenaire, Irene Hamoir and Paul Nouge. He participated for the first time in a Surrealist group exhibition, where he exposed his first object “l’Introuvable” that he created from his own broken glasses. On his return from his military service, he worked in the collective invention of Magritte and Ubac. During the war, Marcel Mariën helped healing the wounded, and then left to Dunkirk and Berck where he was taken prisoner. He was then sent to the concentration camp of Gorlitz until 1941. On his return to Brussels, he met Christian Dotremont and his wife Elisabeth. He founded the Editions “l’Aiguille Aimantee” and published several books. He participated with Scrutenaire and Nouge in the creation of the titles of Magritte’s books. In the beginning of the 40s,he made several trips to Paris, illegally transporting paintings by famous painters such as Picasso, Leger, Chirico and Renoir. Marcel published several books including the first biography of Magritte and participated in conferences about surrealism. In 1948, He settled in Brussels and lived from the profit of his books and from typing works, later on he started working on the “Silver Ocean” cargo sailing from Normandy to the French West Indies. Marcel Mariën met his wife Jane Graverol during Magritte’s first exhibition and with her he founded a communist newspaper they called ” Les Levres Nues”. Despite various deceptions, he managed to create several films including the movie “L’Imitation du Cinema” with Tom Gutt. In 1963, Marcel Mariën left to the United States.Where he worked multiple jobs.The following year, he left to Japan and then Hong Kong. He worked several months in Beijing as a proofreader of the propaganda Newspaper “China under construction” before leaving again to Europe in 1965. He came back to Belgium and published several text of Paul Nouge and Magritte. In 1967, Marcel Mariën exhibited his first collages and some objects. In 1973, he had to go in front of the justice for his past collaboration with the Nazis having participated in the creation of Leon Degrelle’s journal, but he was found innocent. In 1979, Marcel Mariën published a reference book about the history of surrealism in France. He published as well the correspondence of Scutenaire.

(the text above comes from Artsper)

www.ftn-books.com has some Marien titles available

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Bettina Rheims (1952)….ANIMAL

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Bettina Rheims has been working as an artist since the early Seventies but rose to fame with a controversial series on strip-tease artist in 1978. Since her career took of and she was invited to publish her series of photographs with one of the best publishers in the art book business…Gina Kehayoff. Kehayoff is known for making immaculate publications , and she outperformed herself with the publication of the ANIMAL series by Bettina Rheims. The series of black and white photographs was done in 1982 and published in 1994, hard, cloth bound with see through ( perspex?) cover.

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The Animal series enabled her to train her lens on another form of nudity: that of stuffed animals with fixed stares, “which seemed to want to express something beyond death”.”I had to capture their gaze” declared the photographer.

This book is, together with “Morceaux choisis”, my personal favorit book by Rheims and both are available at www.ftn-books.com

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BNO & GKf and Proost Prikkels 251

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The Beroepsorganistaie Nederlandse ontwerpers and the Beroepsvereniging van Fotografen GKF joint forces in a premium edition by the manufacturer of paper for printing purposes….Proost. Proost was known for its quality papers they delivered for printers in the Netherlands and abroad and every few month they published a Proost Prikkels edition to show in which way their papers could be used. The no. 251 is a very prestigious project since it contains fiches ( cards) on all the designers and  photgraphers that used their papers. There are 80 fiches in this cassette which itseld is a beautifully typically designed 60’s project . On the front of the card , names address and short biography of the designer and the back holds a picture of one of his most iconic designs.

On the cards famous names like Piet Zwart, Wim Crouwel, Willem Sandberg, Jurriaan Schrofer and Otto Treumann ao. This is the history of dutch design in a smalll box and available at www.ftn-books.com

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Antonio Calderara (1903-1978) (continued)

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Another blog on Calderara, not only because he is an important artist, but because i have added a very special Calderara to my inventory. It is a very small publication published by the van Eyck BV in the Netherlands. An edition estimated to be less than 500 copies and , what is more important. The little book contains 7 original small serigraphs/ silkscreens by the artist. Like so many of his publications, Calderara made something special of it. It is the same as with his Stedelijk Museum catalogue , which also contains 3 original serigraphs. One is already sold but i have 2 more copies available of this very special Calderara item.

Artist/ Author: Antonio Calderara/ tekst by : Jean Leering

Title : Antonio Calderara 

Pages : 28 

Publisher: van Eyck bv

Text / Language:  dutch

printed by Rosbeek . this printer included 7 original small silkscreen/serigraphs within this beautiful publication

Measurements: 6.1 x 6.1 inches.

Condition: mint- for the cover/mint for the silkscreens

available at www.ftn-books.com

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What is in a name? KUNSTMUSEUM DEN HAAG.

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Is this the Iconic architectural masterpiece by H.P. Berlage ….Haags Gemeentemuseum?

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or is this the home of the largest Mondrian collection in the world….Gemeentemuseum Den Haag?

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Or is this the Kunstmuseum Den Haag, because the other names  are not known enough among the visiting public.

Yes,Gemeentemuseum Den Haag stands for quality of its collections and is worldwide known for its epic Mondrian collection and Yes …to change the name of this museum  is the latest idea by the current director of the Gemeentemuseum Benno Tempel who thinks that the other names are too complicated or not known enough in the art world and in this way it will be clear to everybody what the name stands for.

I personally have a different opinion. The name has changed far too many times during the last 4 decades and i am convinced that the name Gemeentemuseum Den Haag is now known among art lovers all over the world. With changing the name it is more likely that the visitors from outside Europe will think this is “new” perhaps even a german museum , since many museums in the German speaking countries are called ” KUNSTMUSEUM” (Bonn, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Solothurn Winterthur and Basel , Bern inSwitzerland). I think it is a pitty that every new director wants to make a change. Not every change is for the better and this change was not necessary at all. KUNSTMUSEUM is not very original and it does not make clear enough the high qualities of its collection.

The improvement Benno Tempel has in mind with this new name is non existent.

Many of the KUNSTMUSEUM DEN HAAG classic publications, published with its original names. Haags Gemeentemuseum and Gemeentemuseum Den Haag are available at www.ftn-books.com