From the beginning of her career, Rini Hurkmans is concerned with topics such as absence, loss, disruption, alienation and the related concepts of safety, security, identity and compassion. This can, among others, be perceived in the photo series Pietà, in the films Dear Son, The Flavor of Salt and Don Quixote but also in the sculptures The White Shroud and The Inner Garden.
Life, art and politics are intertwined in a continuous dialogue and each specific period requires its own thoughts, strategies, and forms. Hurkmans initiated the conceptual artwork Flag of Compassion in 2002 out of the desire to go beyond the framework of cultural consensus and consumption. Since 2008, she is an advisor to the Unda Foundation, which manages the artwork and also organises a series of Making Waves events around themes related to Flag of Compassion. By engaging with the Flag, it is investigated how a work of art can activate ethical questions in society and how it can function both within the arts and in society. Hurkmans is the driving force behind the book Compassion. A Paradox in Art and Society (Valiz, 2017) in which Flag of Compassion is discussed as a case study.
Presently, she conducts further research into the concept of loss in relation to ethics and politics and makes new work based on her working period as Artist in Residence at the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome (KNIR), partner of the Akademie van Kunsten (KNAW), in 2019. Her research into the press photo of the moment just after Michelangelo’s Pietà (1499) was attacked in 1972 serves as the starting point for her current work, which also builds upon earlier work inspired by this photo since she acquired it in 1992. When the Pietà in the St. Peter’s Basilica was attacked by Laszlo Toth, he destroyed the left arm. Consequently, the initial gesture that reaches out to the public to engage with the theme of the Pietà was annihilated. With the overarching investigation entitled Pietà, A Reconsideration of the Gesture, Hurkmans explores the multi-interpretability of the press photo and the gesture, ultimately reconsidering the gesture in all its forms.
A few years ago i wrote a blog on Vali Myers. She was the” Muse” of Ed van der Elsken for many years and his series with her as a subject is a classic amonglast-century photographs. A few years ago the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam organized an exhibition on Ed van der Elsken and his works. The series with Vali Myeres stood out and was used in the publication to illustrate his Parisian years. The book is now available at www.ftn-books.com and for those interested in Vali Myers the invitation card for a book presentation on her is still available.
Natasja Kensmil is one of those talents that emerged in the last 10 years and proved tobe highly important for modern art. Her art is personal and her style can not be compared to anyone else’s. If any….. i immediately though of Basquiat, but these paintings and drawings by Kensmil practically all tell a story or contain a message for the viewer. Her series of REGENTEN PORTRAITS is a tribute to women who held a position in boards and committees who took care of the old and sick. It was not possible for women to hold a position within a company or government , but these woman made charity in these years possible and took care of the old and sick in society.
Another multi panelled work is the “HUWELIJKS PORTRET VAN JOHANDE WITT AND WENDELA BICKER “. Natasja Kensmill forces us to look at our (not so nice) history and beside the importance of the art itself it makes us aware of the message too.
The book i now have for sale at http://www.ftn-books.com is different. Personal, horror like drawings bound and published by Boekhandel Broekhuis in 2003. Edition of only 500 copies, this book already shows the attraction of Kensmil’s drawing. They attract and repel at the same time. This is the kind of art one must admire and i will be on thelook out for work by Kensmil for our collection.
Koen Wessing was and remains on of the Netherlands most important icons photo journalism. Wessing started as freelance photographer in 1963. In his early years he became renowned for picturing the May protest of 1968 in Paris, the occupation of the Maagdenhuis of the University in Amsterdam in 1969, and later the military coup in Chili in 1973. Later Wessing produced more uniquely powerful work in Ireland, Guinea-Bissau in West Africa, Nicaragua, El Salvador, China and Kosovo.
Seen retrospectively, his work from South America probably received the most attention throughout the years. His images of the 1973 coup in Chile against the progressive government of Salvador Allende, as well the insurrection in Nicaragua and his reportage of the massacre during the funeral of Archbishop Romero in El Salvador, were all striking and alarming. His engaged work in these countries made him an internationally renowned photographer.
Regrettably, Koen Wessing was never able to see the finished exhibition as he passed away in Amsterdam in the morning of February 2, 2011. Until the last moment he had been involved in the preparation of the exhibition. Knowing that the show was going to happen gave him a lot of strength during the last period of his life.
One of the painters i discovered in the early Eighties was Eric Bainbridge , who exhibition was held in 1989 at the Stedelijk Museum. It waas an absolute eye opening exhibition and since i cherish the catalogue ( also available at www.ftn-books.com).
Initially recognized in the 1980s for his object-based works covered in synthetic fur, Eric Bainbridge has evolved an extensive sculptural practice addressing existential themes on an everyday level through playful assemblages. Constructed out of commonplace objects and inexpensive building materials, his pieces continuously re-contextualize Modernist principles through a reconsideration of the found object using DIY home-repair and improvement supplies as well as kitschy consumer products. Carefully staged, Bainbridge’s assemblages investigate the domestic and the everyday whilst reflexively engaging with traditional sculptural concerns.
Eric Bainbridge was born in Consett, County Durham, UK in 1955. He studied at Newcastle Polytechnic and completed a Masters in Sculpture from the Royal College of Art, London in 1981. Bainbridge has exhibited Internationally in significant group and solo exhibitions and is considered an influential figure to a younger generation of established British artists. Throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s he showed in important group exhibitions such as “Material Culture” at the Hayward Gallery, London and solo exhibitions including “View Points” The Walker Art Centre, Minnieapolis, “Eric Bainbridge” at The ICA, Boston, “Style, Space, Elegance” at The Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam. Bainbridge was included in “Modern British Sculpture” at the Royal Academy, London – the most significant exhibition on British Sculpture in recent years, curated by Penelope Curtis and Keith Wilson
Roger Bissiere held an exhibition in 1958 at the Stedelijk Museum. Catalogue and poster were designed by Willem Sandberg. In 1966 it was again time for Bissiere to show his latest works. This time Wim Crouwel designed both catalogue and poster. With the poster he was inspired by the one Sandberg had designed before. The poster is almost classic Sandberg in its approach. Colors, graphic design. red lettering all strongly influenced by Sandberg. But the catalogue!…there it was ….a typical Crouwel design…., size, binding, colors every aspect oozes Crouwel. Here are both and both are available at www.ftn-books.com.
Here is one of the most cherished titles i now also can offer on http://www.ftn-books.com. I now have two sopies of which one becomes for sale. This is special for me. It shows the importance of Ad Petersen as a curator for the Stedelijk Museum and it shows the many contacts he had with world famous artists. He kept and collected the envelopes of the artists he corresponded with and among them many were art themselves, being true ” Mail art”. Studio Anthon Beeke recognized this and published together with Anthon Beeke and Ad Petersen a selection of over 60 envelopes and published these in the book EEN KLEINE VISUELE KEITELING. The design of the book and the collection of envelopes is sublime. Making this one of the most cherished books in my personal collection.
Today another combination. The year 10 years later. More experiments were done and the result is two different approaches to the design by Willem Sandberg . One with torn out letters and the other with layers of art combined into a designed poster. Both fascinating and available at www.ftn-books.com.
A few weeks ago i started to persent the combination of catalogue and poster published with an exhibition. The initial blogs were on publications designed by Wim Crouwel, but to day and tomorrw i will show you 2 combinations by another great…WILLEM SANDBERG
The first is for the Andre Bauchant ehibition in 1949.
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This is almost 1 on 1. You of color and background are the same. The fonts however are different.
As promissed, some of the combinations that were published for the Stedelijk Museum exhibitions. I can show these because i recently acquired a great set of Crouwel designed posters. These combined with the other publications of the Stedelijk Museum that i have for sale at http://www.ftn-books.com makes some great visual presentations in my blogs. Today the VORMEN VAN DE KLEUR. The first large scale presentation of Colorfield and minimal art in the Netherlands. The catlogue was published in a Crouwel designed portfolio including 4 silkscreen prints of which one by Ellsworth Kelley and the poster has the same great color scheme. Minimal and colorfield combined into a great poster by Wim Crouwel. Both are now available at www.ftn-books.com.
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