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Aat Veldhoen (1934-2018)

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Art collecting is full of surprises. I started collecting books and art some 50 years ago and in this time I encountered some amazing works of art. I bought only a few and “forgot” to buy many, but I always had an open mind for great techniques. Aat Veldhoen was such an artist. He was arguably the first dutch artist who made his art available for the common people. Selling rotaprints by Jasper Grootveld these “erotic” prints were not appreciated and thought to be pornographic.

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These erotic prints can be considered the same as the Japanese Shunga prints, but with less colour and possible more realistic. Still the technique is stupendous. Lifelike figures making love, not hiding themselves and enjoying each other. Veldhoen became famous for these prints and drawings and during his life eventually was admired for them. Now culminating in a great solo exhibition at Museum Kranenburgh ( https://www.kranenburgh.nl/english/exhibitions-and-activities/aat-veldhoen-art-of-life). Unfortunately coles at this moment because of the Covid-19 virus, but hopefully open again later in June. Seeing these great drawings I have a feeling to compare these with Lucian Freud his works. the human figure in all its glory, not hiding anything.

Why this blog on Veldhoen now. …….Yesterday I met with a client who wanted very much to by the Jan Cremer i had in my collection for over 30 years. We made a deal and I sold him the Cremer. Today he came to fetch it and brought a beautiful drawing by Veldhoen of his former wife KABUL. I was very much impressed with this drawing and I could buy it from the Cremer buyer. So now this drawing is mine and I am still impressed by it. There are not many drawings by Veldhoen. A great many of them were destroyed and cut, but this remains and was in its former private collection for over 30 years. It was bought directly from Veldhoen and his a fitting ” Heijdenrijk” frame which enhance s the drawing. A classic ‘nude pose” of by Kabul makes this a typical Aat Veldhoen drawing.

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Aat Veldhoen (1934 – 2018) lived for and surrounded himself with his art. He worked in his teeming house and studio on Amsterdam’s Wittenburgergracht. The creative urge that underscored his versatile oeuvre, including drawings, etchings, paintings, photos, ceramics and sculptures, remained unwavering to the end.

Desire, love, sex, illness, old age, death

After studying drawing, Veldhoen set about documenting desire, love, sex, illness, old age and death, all with uncompromising zeal and compassion. This exhibition includes work Veldhoen made after suffering a partial paralysis at the age of 69, as well as Polaroids from the Rijksmuseum collection which have never been shown before.

Veldhoen’s exceptional and enduring curiosity for everything human resulted in an intimate, lifelong study of those around him. We see this in Veldhoen’s countless portraits of himself and his family, friends and artists.

Life and art

The works in Aat Veldhoen – Art of Life show remarkable connections with the work of those he knew and encountered. His life and art were inextricably intertwined. The result is a personal and tender view of human existence. Since Veldhoen often portrayed himself, the viewer is no longer the only voyeur.

for more information on the drawing please inquire at ftnbooksandart@gmail.com

 

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Paul Wunderlich (1927-2010)

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Paul Wunderlich can be considered as a second generation surreal painter/sculptor. First there was the generation of magritte and Dali who were recognized as being important. This generation was followed by artists who stayed true to Surrealism for their entire artist careers. Labisse, Fuchs, Tanguy and ….Paul Wunderlich . The artist for who the human figure was the start of many art work. He specially was fond of the male figure, which he used on many occasions in his art, but that was not the first art work by Wunderlich i encountered. I know exactly what and where it was. Somewhere in the early Seventies a newspaper article was published and in the article the NIKE sculpture by Wunderlich was mentioned. I learned who sold it and hoped to acquire it for my staring collection, because its edition size was large ( 1000 copies). It was not to be….visiting the gallery Steltman who exhibited and sold the sculpture i learned that the price was 1100 guilders. A price far too steep for me…so i dit not buy it. A few years later my parents decided to buy it together with another Wunderlich sculpture which is now still in my collection.

My sister has the NIKE statue. Both statues/sculptures still grace our living rooms. Wunderlich is perhaps not the most fashionable artist to have in your collection, but i can guarantee you that his works will grow on you.

http://www.ftn-books.com has some nice Wunderlich publications available .

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Nico Diemer designer for the Filmmuseum Cinematheek

I never had heard of Nico Diemer, but a few weeks ago i bought a stack of Seventies Filmmuseum/ Cinemateek publications . All of these had intriguing covers and showed a lot of design quality. I searched on the internet and tried to find more information on this graphic designer, but found nothing at all and i concluded that mr. Diemer was an amateur designer and must have been part of the staff in the early years of the “Filmmuseum Cinemateek” in Amsterdam. But just take a look at these covers and conclude for yourself that they have a quality of their own. The relation between graphic design and Cinema is obvious and highly recognizable.

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Wim Crouwel (continued )

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Early September 2019 i recommended the Mr Gridnik exhibition which would open shortly  after in the Stedelijk Museum. Just a few days before opening Mr.  Gridnik/ Wim Crouwel died  and he never witnessed his tribute at the Stedelijk. Since i have not found the time to go to this exhibition myself, but now that i finally have the opportunity and started planning my visit, i found out that all rooms are photographed and can be visited on line. It is a worthy tribute to one of the greatest designers from the last decade, but could have been much more complete. It focusses for 90% on the Stedelijk Museum publications, but it is still a very impressive sight to see so many great designs collected, but the real surprise is that i noticed that i have almost all of the books on show in my inventory. (www.ftn-books.com)

For those living too far away to visit the exhibition….here is the direct link to the rooms and showcases with Crouwel material:

https://www.stedelijk.nl/nl/crouwel-vitrines

and another excellent site with 19 photographs:

http://dutchdesigndaily.com/nl/nieuw/wim-crouwel-mr-gridnik/

 

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Sam Francis (continued) and Nico Delaive

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As long as i remember i encountered the works by Sam Francis at the gallery Nico Delaive. From the early days of Swatch specials  (Sam Francis special) and the space occupied by Nico Delaive together with Art Unlimited the publisher i took an interest in Sam Francis  and even now , many years later,  i am always keen on the publications by Sam Francis. The copy that i recently added to my inventory is a rare one. Only 1500 copies worldwide of which not many will be on the market. The copy is now available at www.ftn-books.com

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Geoffrey Dashwood (1947)

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I had never seen a sculpture by Geoffrey Dashwood before until i saw in an art magazine one of the super birds by Dashwood. At least 4 times as big as a human being and oh so impressive. I must say the sculptures remind me of the ones made in the Netherlands around the 20’s in last century. Specially the bird sculptures by Mendes da Costa have the same way of simplifying as Dashwood does.

But i can understand the attraction of these beautiful sculptures. They are likable and at the same time they have a true artistic quality. By no means these are cheap, affordable sculptures. Since the book that www.ftn-books.com has for sale includes the price list from the Sladmore gallery in 2005. Price range between 5000 and 50.000 ( monumental owl) British Pounds. But certrainly do not hesitate to visit a n exhibition when it is held nearby.

 

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Here is the biography from the Dashwood official site

Geoffrey Dashwood was born in Hampshire, England in 1947. At the age of fifteen he won a scholarship to study fine art at Southampton College of Art, but left after a brief period, preferring to study directly from nature.

He worked in varied occupations to support himself and experimented in various art mediums and techniques in his spare time. His last employment was with the Forestry Commission where he was engaged as a keeper in the New Forest. He also became the unofficial artist in residence for his employers. Dashwood left the Forestry Commission in his mid-twenties to pursue a freelance career in art and he soon received commissions for illustrations and design work, whilst concurrently drawing and painting independently.

In the 1980s Dashwood discovered a gift and a passion for sculpture. His earliest works were small, highly realistic studies in the mainstream of traditional English wildlife art and comparable in style to the famous 19th century French Animalier School of Sculpture. Although these early works brought him commercial success, he became increasingly dissatisfied with the constraints of realism and the lack of personal expression the genre afforded him.

Dashwood started to experiment with larger life-size and monumental works and began to eliminate all superfluous details, creating boldly modeled pieces. He refined his sculptures to attain smooth, tactile, pure forms, further enhanced in bronze by the application of coloured and multi-coloured patinas. In these sculptures he combined his own aesthetic ideals, establishing a distinctive style which is now internationally recognised as being quintessentially Dashwood. His affinity for and empathy with birds and his unique ability to express these emotions to others through his sculpture is undisputed. Dashwood’s work is exhibited and collected worldwide.

 

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Chaim Levano ( 1928-2016)

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Chaim Levano was born on January 1, 1928 in Heerlen, Limburg, Netherlands. He was an actor, known for Warum Ulli sich am Weihnachtsabend umbringen wollte (2005), De zwarte meteoor (2000) and Baantjer (1995). He died on February 17, 2016 in Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands.

This in short all that i found on Levano, but there must be much more, since a very impressive publication, including a DVD on his career was published by Huis Clos. Everything is done with the utmost tastte. design by Piet Gerards, photography by Koos Breukel and a movie by Kees hin. This is a AAA production and now available at http://www.ftn-books.com

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Art & Project final season 1998

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People following this blog know that i have acquired a large collection with Bulletins and invitations of the Art & Project gallery. Geert van Beijeren and Adriaan van Ravesteijn have published in nearly 30 years numerous publications. Bulletins, Catalogues, invitations, multiples and letters. Here is the final announcement of all their activities. In dutch they announce the ending of their gallery activities by the end of August 1998. This final announcement is now for sale at www.ftn-books.com

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Stedelijk Museum 2009 … a cotton bag

 

During the renovation of the Stedelijk Museum in 2009. There were only 5 special opening days of the museum. These days were on the occasion of the Amsterdam art fair to let the public see the progress and possibilities of the “new” building and get acqainted with it

The museum had a completely different approach in showing its colection since the rooms were filled for a period of only 5 days. The result a truly different museum filled with surprising and fantastic art and this bag is proof that there were these opening days in May 2009. There were 4 different versions and all versions are available. The bag is made of cotton and contained a newspaper on the museum and had a special button on the outside. These bags have now become highly collectable items and are now for sale at www.ftn-books.com. An important Stedelijk Museum collectible.

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Vrouwen van Amsterdam, 1970

This is the title of a publication which is since a few weeks available at http://www.ftn-books.com. Inspired by the Ed van der Elsken exhibition at the Nederlands Fotomuseum which recently closed, i was looking for publications that were special and depicted the era of Sixties and early Seventies. This is one of the first of i hope many discoveries. “Vrouwen van Amsterdam” was published by Fototribune in 1970 and contains photographs of Amsterdam Women by the vey best . Ed van der Elsken, Cor Jaring, Koen Wessing and Claud van Heye. These are just a few names who had their input in this great publication. Typical Late Sixties photography, the age of Love & Peace depicted by great dutch photographers.