Around 1972 , Wim Crouwel started to use a computer design inspired layout for the Museum Fodor publications. A bright orange/red color with in the background a pattern of fine white dot. Just below the middle a tin white line. Fodor in Pink. On the left half the exhibition in info and in Most cases above the white line the artist name. Over 40 publications have appreared within these series and nearly all belong to the very best of Crouwel designs from the Seventies. http://www.ftn-books.com has many of these publications available. This is a typical connoiseurs choice, not expensive and with all the qualities of a Seventies Crouwel designed publication.
I have a large collection of Gilbert & George publications . Small and large ones, artist books and retropective catalogues. I asked myself why i am fascinated by these artists. My fascination started when Rudi Fuchs presented Gilbert & George at the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag and has grown since. The result is….. numerous publications in my inventory all on this illustrous artist couple.
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The ones of Art & Project and the Stedelijk Museum are maybe the most scarce and wanted ones, But now i have acquired , what is perhaps the most accessable book and best introduction to the art of Gilbert & george. It is the Robin Dutt book , published by PWP who shows the works of G&G over several decades and perhaps more important, the development of their art. The book is now available at www.ftn-books.com but more important is, that it feels like their partnership is now complete and any new work is a repetition of earlier ones. Gilbert & George have established themselves as one of the truly great modern art artist and it i snow time for every art lover to recognize their importance and learn to appreciate their works.
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.
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.
Over the years I have seen many Wim Crouwel designed catalogues. But one is definitely in my personal top 10 of Crowel designed catalogues.
It is the 1966 ANDRÉ VOLTEN catalogue he made for the Voltens Stedelijk Museum exhibition. Just some features of this great catalogue. The size. It has never been better than the size of the catalogues he designed in the early Sixties. The back has that typical Crouwel designed element. The lettering. Just look at the E of Andre. is has a hardly noticable accent aigu making it the perfect É. And than there is this graphical element taken from a Volten sculpture . It is there , but it also underlines is a very subtle way the name of Volten.
Than there is the inside cover. A shiny silver . Just that one page but a very very powerful elemnt in the catalogue. All pages have a tranquility with lots of space, making the catalogue breath. Photography is top with a brilliant Volten portrait in his studio at work…… a lovely and highly collectable catalogue and still for sale at www.ftn-books.com
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.
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.
Readers of this blog know of my admiration for Gerard Verdijk and did not hesitate a single secoond when in 2011 a very large painting by Verdijk was put up for auction and did not receive its first bid. It appeared to be the winning bid and since the moment this painting entered our home it has been on display in our living room. The painting was part of the Peter Stuyvesant collection but a decade ago the staff of the Turmac Tobacco company and the founders of the Stuyvesant foundation decided to sell their collection. This collection is very well documented and from its earliest of beginnings the best dutch designers made the catalogues which documented their additions. I knew almost for certain that our paintings was in one of these publications but i never found the right one, but…..i now have it and i am very pleased that our painting is prominently present in a beautiful large catalogue, designed by Anton Beeke …and the title of it is “GROOT” in de collectie Peter Stuyvesant.
Published in 1997, the new additions were curated by the former director of the Stedelijk Museum, Wim Beeren.( see photo above this blog) An interesting final addition which almost completes all Peter Stuyvesant publications. This one is not for sale but there are others which are available at http://www.ftn-books.com.
It was a long time on my wish list and ia finally could fullfill this wish. Since i met Floor van Keulen at the Haags Gemeentemuseum where he painted the “Project room” at the Haags Gemeentemuseum in 1989.
His wall drawings are extremely large narratives. You can discover human figuren, weapons, books and landscapes all within the same wall painting/drawing. Connected with eachother by more figures and objects, resulting in an almost abstract painting, but with so many details that are realistic. His stand alone paintings are scarce. Most of the time lare/extremely large and where his small drawings are just sketches and exercises for the large wall drawings. His paintings on paper are true paintings. Where his wall drawings are most of the time removed or painted over. His large “paintings” are permanent and one of these , from 1987 , i now have added to the FTN art collection.
The following text was found on the Piet Heen eek site and shows a different approach to his art.
Human figures and cartoons are the only motifs in the repertoire of drawings created by Floor van Keulen since 1980. They appear to be randomly spread across the surface, components of a well-balanced composition without any specific meaning. Shapes effortlessly melt into one another, debate with each other; emotions occasionally flare up, only to harmoniously merge together afterwards.
Floor van Keulen appears to shirk from the formal experiment, the abstract art experiment, in which realistic and figurative art that set the tone for hundreds of years is brushed aside as a truly relevant form. Van Keulen does not allow himself to be drawn into movements or trends within contemporary art. He has developed his own unique vision and confrontational visual language in which figurative depictions are interwoven with abstract shapes.
His art originates in his imagination and reality. He uses the ‘vocabulary’ he has put together through the years to formulate a vision of the world around him. The viewer encounters the virtuosity of the image and gets carried away in the painter’s exuberant gesture. On closer analysis of what it is exactly that affects the viewer so strongly, he or she first focuses on the pattern and motifs, attempting to decipher the artist’s story by interpreting the figurative elements. Only later does he or she discover that it is the work as a whole that is key here, the total emotion, not the details, form and contra-form. At first glance, the work appears to be expressive, but on closer inspection, clearly has a more subdued character and is carefully balanced and considered.
I understand completely that artist draw inspiration from other artists their works, but in the case of this “Fait d’hiver ” it is far too much a copy than an original work by Koons. I know of the spectacular Banality series sculpture from the Stedelijk Museum and i think it was a rightful choice to acquire this for a large sum., but i did not know the sculpture from the Centre Pompidou and its history. Here is the storuy which i found on “art-critique”
A Paris court of appeals has upheld a 2018 ruling regarding a 2015 copyright infringement lawsuit brought on by photographer Franck Davidovici. With the Tuesday decision, the Centre Pompidou and artist Jeff Koons have been found guilty of copyright infringement and now jointly owe Davidovici €190,000 (£163,900).
The lawsuit hinges on a 1988 sculpture by Koons called Fait d’hiver depicts the bust of a woman lying on the ground as a pig, wearing a flowered collar with a barrel, and two penguins look on. The amusing sculpture was part of “Banality,” a series by Koons that debuted in 1988. The series raised eyebrows at the time but many of its works would go on to be featured in a 2014 retrospective of Koons’ works that kicked off at the Whitney in New York before traveling to the Centre Pompidou and then the Guggenheim Bilbao.
Meant to be commentary on the imagery of mass media, Fait d’hiver became the centre of the dispute after Davidovici saw Koons’ sculpture in a catalogue for the Centre Pompidou’s exhibition of the 2014 retrospective. The issue was that Davidovici found the sculpture to be incredibly similar to a photograph taken and published by the photographer in 1985.
Davidovici’s black and white photograph was created for the French brand Naf Naf and included a woman, wearing a jacket with fur accents, lying on the ground. A pig, wearing a collar with a barrel gazes at the woman with the words “FAIT D’HIVER” in the top left corner of the two-page spread.
While Koons made a few alterations, like the addition of two penguins and swapping the fur jacket for a mesh top, the sculpture does seem to mimic the photo taken by Davidovici just a few years earlier.
Davidovici first sued Koons and the Parisian museum in 2015 and in 2018, a judge ruled that the artist and museum violated copyright laws and owed Davidovici €135,000. However, the artist and museum appealed the ruling which has now been upheld and their monetary penalty was increased by €55,000. Additionally, if the museum or Koons continue to exhibit Fait d’hiver online, they will be fined €600 per day. Meanwhile, the publishers of the 2014 catalogue that accompanied the retrospective now owes Davidovici €14,000 as well.
In 2007, an artist’s proof of Koons’ Fait d’hiver sold at Christie’s for just under $4.3 million (£3 million).
Koons is no stranger for being taken to court for plagiarism. In 2019, a Paris court upheld a 2017 ruling that found the artist, and again the Centre Pompidou, guilty of copyright infringement. That case concerned Koons’ sculpture from the same series called Naked and a photograph titled Enfants by French photographer Jean-François Bauret. While the sculpture was not shown in the 2014 retrospective, images of it were used to advertise the show. The artist and museum were ordered to pay €20,000 to Bauret’s family. Koons also paid the family an addition €4,000 for use of the image.
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.
One of the most iconic sets is the catalogue and poster for the 1965 Raysse exhibition. Pure french Pop Art whith a poster that shows the neon elements for which aysse became famous. Both poster and book belong to the best Crouwel has designed in the Sixties for the Stedelijk …..
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and this time they have many design elements in common.
Artist/ Author: Oliver Boberg
Title : Memorial
Publisher: Oliver Boberg
Measurements: Frame measures 51 x 42 cm. original C print is 35 x 25 cm.
signed by Oliver Boberg in pen and numbered 14/20 from an edition of 20