Just last year Robert Morris died at the age of 87 and because of a folder i found on his Observatory in the Netherlands, this folder reminded me of his importance for Modern and Minimal art. Robert Morris had a special connection with the Netherlands and during his life he made some iconic land Art projects on this country. One of these projects was the ” OBSERVATORIUM” at a town called Lelystad. The best is can do now is show you how impressive and “beautiful this project still is:
It must have been in the mid nineties and because of my contact with Jan Jongepier, who worked for Drukkerij Lecturis, i was proposed to acquire some works for my personal collection. It were the works artists used for a partial payment of the printers services and were now for sale. One of them was a rectangular stone sculpture by Ulrich Ruckriem and ….i did not buy it. ( if i remember it well it looked something like this)
At that time i thought it to be too expensive for only 1.5 meters of stone and secondly and even more important ..where would i put it? Both were reasons not to buy the work and now 20 years later i am sorry that i did not buy it, because now i appreciate in full the simplicity , but also the strength of Ruckriems works. The only thing that is left is that the memory is still there and every time i pick up a book from http://www.ftn-books.com on Ruckriem i am reminded of the work i once could have bought.
Honestly… i must say that i had not heard from both, but because we were traveling a few weeks ago Wageningen ( Hotel de Wereld) and visited the local museum HET DEPOT, in which sculptures related to the human body are exhibited, we came across Joost Barbiers’s his work. Immediately , me and Linda liked it very much. The use of material which is left unworked and partly rough and in most cases in the same sculpture is polished in other parts ,is beautiful.
The museum HET DEPOT itself can be highly recommended too, but i will discuss this in another blog.
After a few days we came home and i contacted through the site of Joost Barbiers (http://www.joostbarbiers.nl) the artist and was replied by his wife who told me that Joost had passed away in November 2015 and that all of his remaining works were exhibited in LAD/ Land Art Delft ( http://www.landartdelft.nl ). This announcement came as a shock, because we did not expect that, but we also learned that the remaining works from his studio were transported to LAD .
Another great project of which i had never heard before. Included in the mail was an invitation to attend the opening of the exhibition of Joost Barbiers, but because of a tight time schedule on that Sunday i could not attend, so i decided to go early and visit LAD. What a nice surprise!….. a landscape with wild flowers, birds and Land Art makes this a beautiful place to visit, experience great art and….walk the dog. The statues of Barbiers are presented in the best possible way in these surroundings and show why this artist is one to have a bigger audience. Rough and cultivated go hand in hand and these sculptures blend into the landscape as if these sculptures have always been there.
Besides the sculptures by Barbiers ( ca. 20 sculptures ) many other can be found there because LAD has a program with artists in residence who work there and leave there sculptures behind.
Conclusion….do not visit Delft solely to see the original scenery of Vermeer, but visit Land Art Delft too and be amazed by the Barbiers sculptures.
The year is 1991. The occasion is the opening of the exhibition on Hamish Fulton. Curated by Rudi Fuchs and Franz Kaiser. The Haags Gemeentemuseum organized this excellent exhibition which was accompanied by a publication ONE HUNDRED WALKS ,which still is one of my personal favorites and certainly is one of the most beautiful books in my collection. The book was designed by Hamish Fulton himself and Gracia Lebbink was asked to do the graphic layout and production. The result….. an artist book which is one of the best ever published.
The book was delivered ( as almost always) just a few hours before the opening of the exhibition and sold during this opening. The next day i encountered Fulton in the corridor of the museum and complimented him on the book and asked if he could sign my personal copy. No problem….. the book was signed and i had another souvenir for my collection, but then it occurred to me that the idea of signing some of these could be profitable for the museum and i asked him if he could sign and number a series of 20 copies to be sold in our museum bookstore.
The friendly and sympathetic person he is , he did not even think about it and asked for the 20 copies to sign them. Later that afternoon he came to the library , set himself at a desk and signed the 20 copies , which were numbered 1 to 20. The signature he placed in the books is still one of my most admired signatures in Modern Art. The way it is placed on the page and dated, plus the story behind it makes this still very special to me. The books ( signed and unsigned version) are still available at :
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