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Huub ( and Adelheid) Kortekaas (1935)

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Perhaps their most important work is the realisation of a sculpture garden devoted to the Five religions of the world.

Tuinen

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The garden is filled with symbolism and numbers which have a relation with the religions they are presenting in their garden. It is impressive, but Kortekaas is familiar with scaping his surroundings and making his sculptures part of the landscape. I just added an early 1967 catalogue to my inventory and it shows the strength and power of his sculptures which are placed and arranged in a dutch landscape.

When you have a chance to visit tis garden….do not hesitate to devote half an hour of your time to this peaceful place, because it is kind of magical.

The above publication is available at www.ftn-books.com

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Mark Manders (1968)

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Just to illustrate the work by Mark Manders here follows a text he wrote in 1994.

The Absence of Mark Manders

Under a table you have the possibility to test your own absence. The realization that life is taking its course, even without you, is an intense human experience; it shows the finiteness of personality. Mark Manders has inhabited his self-portrait since 1986. This building can expand or shrink at any moment. In this building all words created by mankind are on hand. The building arises, like words, out of interaction with life and things.

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The thoughts that surround him in his building are, materialized or not, always important and never gratuitous. ‘When years ago I went for a walk, I would walk through streets where sometimes a clothespeg would be lying, or, when I entered a place, there would be a table with, for instance, a telephone and an empty vase, briefly I would find myself in a world that I hadn’t determined myself. I decided to build a building next to that world, or rather, in that world. A building which was dominated by a changing arrest, where and through which I would be confronted continuously with my choice, the choice of Mark Manders.’ Mark Manders considers the world surrounding his building as an evolved organism that has been constructed from so-called semi-truths. These fall as some loose atom-truths in a kind of ‘encyclopaedia basement’, a space of about four by five metres, around which he constructs his building. Herewith, Mark Manders places his self-portrait as a building actually between two world views: the world as constructed from atom-like semi-truths and the one in which these truths are accepted as facts. Often, we are not afraid in our materialized projection, the world itself has been confided to us. I remember how we determined our first priority roads and that diviners (reading the future in liver) indicated the place of the city. Walking through my building, I get confronted everywhere with deep arrest, it is terrific, the things over here surmount my momentaneous thinking and are familiar to me, I never get bored.

Mark Manders, 1994

www.ftn-books.com has some nice Mark Manders publications available

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Maria C.P. Huls (1950)

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Dutch-born Maria Huls has had education in the Netherlands but is now living since 1988 near Osnabrück. When I look at her work I do not see much of a dutch tradition in her sculptures. I find them more inspired by Minimal and Konkrete Kunst. This is the kind of art that inspires me and when I look at Huls her sculptures I find them very peaceful but full of tension because of the layered shapes and torsions.

Especially her Kleinskulpturen have these qualities. This another of those lesser-known artists that you discover while writing a regular blog. Maria C.P. Huls deserves a better presentation of her works.

huls

 

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Sjoerd Buisman (continued)

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A few years ago I wrote a blog on Sjoerd Buisman and explained that I admire his works since I met him at the Gemeentemuseum where he did a project with willow branches on the sides of the ponds of the Gemeentemuseum, but I could not find photographs of the project!

Now I can correct this omission since I bought 2 books on Buisman. One on his sculptures and other works from 1967-1992 and the other on his GROEIWERKEN in which I found the photographs I had been looking for for a very long time.

buisman dd

Both Sjoerd Buisman titles are now available at www.ftn-books.com

 

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Berlinde de Bruyckere (1964)

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For me Berlinde de Bruyckere stands for “poetic discomfort”.

The first time I encountered a work by de Bruyckere was the very fragile “donkey” Sculpture which is in the Caldenborgh collection. In the middle of the woods from his estate, the sculpture can be found on a semi-open space between wood and leaves. Made from lead and highly detailed this shows that the lead is soft, fragile and shows the vulnerability of the composition and the materials.

The second time was when a sculpture by de Bruyckere was presented in a showcase together with the walls hung with magnificent Bacon paintings in one of the rooms of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag. It was a rare occasion that these two great artists were combined and I rarely have seen a more impressive and beautiful presentation of both these great artists.

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She makes three-dimensional sculptures, installations and aquarelles. Her older work has a minimalist character. Steel, stone and glass were her materials of choice. Gradually she leaves abstract motifs to seek recourse in recognisable forms and things, introducing the blanket, malleable lead and straw as materials.

More recently, she has extended her personal iconography with striking sculptures of (stuffed) horses and giant (once-) cuddly animals. The beauty of the materials she uses always has something of the fatal in it. The blankets in her sculptures protect and suffocate, the lead roses seduce and poison, the carpet of begonias bear witness to bloom and decay. She intentionally uses familiar forms to inspire thinking in viewers, to provide them with memories. Her preference lies with materials and forms that mirror ambiguity, something characteristic of the human experience. Beneath the delicate and sometimes deceptively endearing skin of her work is a yawning abyss. Death, fear and loneliness are recurrent themes, though never disconnected from life, love and beauty. Despite the great formal diversity of her works, there is a common thread running throughout her oeuvre in terms of choice of materials, techniques and the repeating of symbols and motifs.

Aside from her three-dimensional works, the artist has also always put her ideas on paper. These works (drawings and aquarelles, or aquarelle and gouache combined on old paper or cardboard) are often preparatory material for the sculptures but are autonomous works in themselves. Berlinde De Bruyckere does not impose ‘the’ interpretation of her works. She consciously leaves the door open for diverse understandings.

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www.ftn-books.com has now the book available which was published on the occasion of the 55th Biennale di Venezia. Text by J.M. Coetzee and of course the photographs on the installation by de Bruycker

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Maddy Arkesteyn (1966-2012)

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A promising career was ended much too soon because of a deadly disease which ended her life in 2012. But Maddy Arkesteyn has left us some impressive works in public collections and an excellent catalogue which was published by Centrum Beeldendende Kunst in 1994. This catalogue shows that Arkesteyn needed space for her works. These are not intimate little paintings but large installations in which she uses all materials that are nearby or at hand. Educated in Maastricht at the Academie Voor Beeldende Kunst and finishing her educations at the Ateliers ’63 in 1989-1991.

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After de Boterhal an an exhibition in Ateliers Ville de Marseille. Only local exhibitions as theone in Dordrecht at Pictura.

Possibly the final interview she gave can be found at this address:

Interview July 2012

In this interview she tells what drives her to make the art she does.

www.ftn-books.com has the CBK title available.

 

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Carel Kneulman (1915-2008)

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A few days ago I wrote a blog on Aat Veldhoen and illustrated it with a photograph of Jasper Grootveld selling Rotaprints by Veldhoen. In the photograph, the dutch will recognize the “classic” Philips logo on the wall of Atheneum bookstore and “HET LIEVERDJE” the iconic statue.

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The Provo movement gathered at this place and the statue is still a symbol of the roaring PROVO Sixties in Amsterdam. The statue was made by Carel Kneulman, one of the leading Amsterdam artists who made a name for himself with sculptures. Forget HET LEIVERDJE and look at his other works you can see a sculptor influenced by Moore and Brancusi and making far better sculptures than the one at the Spui square. It took until his 80th birthday until he received full recognition for his art. At that time he finally received a retrospective at the Stedelijk Museum, but a few years earlier a nice exhibition was being held at the Museum Fodor ( 1990) which exquisite catalogue is now available at www.ftn-books.com

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Josef Felix Müller (1955)

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A typical Swiss artist who is rooted in the German and Swiss sculpture and graphic arts scenes. Looking at his graphic art you can go back decades and decades and see what kind of art he must have seen in his youth. These influences are evident and are translated into a kind of personal art I like very much.

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Bold, rough and poetic all combined at the same time. An interesting interview with Josef Felix Müller can be found with this link:

Click to access mueller_butter-milk-soap_1990.pdf

Of course http://www.ftn-books.com has some nice Josef Felix Müller publications available

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Riki Mijling (1954)

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Two reasons for writring a blog on Riki Mijling. First reason is i admire her works since i first saw them at the ART AMSTERDAM fair in 2005(?). I . am fond of Concrete and minimal art and in her art i find a twist that fascinates me. Yesterday at the local bookmarket i bought a small artist book by Riki Mijling. Published ia a very small signed and numbered edition of only 20 copies. The reason i noticed it was a ribbed card board cover which was etched by the artist rM ’00. So her innitals and signatue are appearing twice in this very limited edition which is now for sale at www.ftn-books.com

Here follows the biography which can be found on the Riki Mijling site:

Dutch sculptor Riki Mijling (1954, Nijmegen, the Netherlands) works in a rich tradition of non-objective, post-minimalist sculpture. The twentieth century art genealogy shows a forceful line of abstract-geometry, with pioneers such as Kasimir Malevitjs, Vladimir Tatlin, Piet Mondrian and Theo van Doesburg. 

Developments in art since the mid-1960s show how artists expanded on this legacy, on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. In the United States artists like Carl Andre, Donald Judd and Robert Morris burst onto the scene, causing a landslide with their minimalist approaches, a radical simplification of forms and dissolving ‘meaning’ in the traditional sense. 

And in the Netherlands too, artists sought for new forms of expressiveness, for a formal and linguistic reduction, no-longer connected to representation and story-telling.  With her sculpture––and her works on paper too––Mijling expands on this rich tradition of essentialism, developing a characteristic and unique visual language. 

Mijling pairs a reductionist approach with a warm, ‘charged’ character of her sculptures in waxed steel, Cor-Ten steel, glass and stone. It distinguishes Mijling from so many contemporaries and admired forerunners, and raises the question whether the concept of ‘minimalism’ is, in Mijling’s case, still applicable.

​The non-referential, archetypical forms of Riki Mijling’s sculptures lead back to basic elements, to universal significance of timeless forms. Unmistakably ‘Mijling’ is a quest for an ideal line, for pure form and a new experience of space, of the balance between matter and non-matter. 

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Ruud Kuijer (1959)

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It takes some time to appreciate the sculptures by Ruud Kuijer, but as his scultures grew in their sizes i started to admire more and more his works. It must have been in the mid Eighties that we once met, shook hands and had a short conversation, but i never have met him since and i did not search for his works until a few years ago i saw pictures of his WATERWERKEN series.

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Impressive, complex, extremely large sized sculptures that reminded me in their size and presence of the Richard Serra THE MATTER OF TIME, which is also extremely large and can only be admired within or from a distance. The Waterwerken series can be found on the Ruud Kuijer site, but there is much more to the sculptures by Ruud Kuijer. You can find some nice publications at http://www.ftn-books.com in which his earlier sculptures can be found and admired including the recently Centraal Museum catalogue from1990.kuijer centaal

The sculptor Ruud Kuijer is known for his abstract sculptures made from ordinary materials such as wood, concrete, iron, rope and threaded rod. His Waterworks project, a line of seven large sculptures situated along the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal in Utrecht, has attracted a lot of attention. Kuijer’s work is involved in many contemporary sculpture exhibitions, private- and museum collections and projects worldwide.