For his second solo exhibition at Galerie Ron Mandos, Roderick Hietbrink (1975) will show recent works developed during (and in response to) his 6-month artist in residence in Beijing. The work consists of a series of photographs, videos and sculptures. These will coincide with the premiere of the three channel video installation The Living Room.
The Living Room uses a typical Dutch phenomenon – the ‘doorzonwoning’ – as a setting to question the meaning of the private home in relation to the world outside. The ‘doorzonwoning’ (literally sun-through-house) is a type of row house. It distinguishes itself from other row houses by its living room that stretches from the front of the house all the way to the back. Two large windowpanes on either side connect it with the front and back yard, allowing for the sun to enter freely. The ‘doorzonwoning’ became very popular in the Netherlands in the sixties and seventees. Until today, almost a third of the Dutch population lives in these types of houses.
The Living Room depicts the quiet atmosphere of the home by showing details of its interior. Close ups of different kinds of furniture display personal belongings, potted plants, photos, souvenirs and other bric-a-brac, giving an insight about its inhabitants. A thin sheet of glass separates it from the outside world. Besides a clock ticking softly in the background, time seems to have come to a halt. This vacuum is suddenly interrupted by a large oak tree that enters the room. The three different video projections confront the viewer with the impact this has to both tree and home.
Juxtaposed is the work Hietbrink created during his residency in Beijing. Using plastic flowers, golden fabrics and other colourful materials that mimic the real, he created a series of photographs, videos and sculptures that deal with different notions of concealing. It is a direct response to a phenomenon Hietbrink recognized as typically Chinese: the covering of objects in public space. The often ambiguous reasons range from protection against weather influences, beautification or as a disguise to ward off eager eyes. The hidden objects loose their initial function, turning into amorphous shapes. By photographing staged situations in public space, Hietbrink comments on this phenomenon.
Roderick Hietbrink received his BA in 1999 from the Art Academy St. Joost in Breda and his MFA in 2002 from the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam. Over the past years he has taken part in several residency programs such as Kunstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin, Platform Garanti in Istanbul and Artspace in Sydney. In January 2011 he started his two year residency at the Rijksakademie voor beeldende kunsten in Amsterdam.
The Living Room is made possible by the generous support of the Dutch Filmfund, the Centre for Visual Arts CBK Rotterdam and dKC Rotterdam.The residency in Beijing is made possible by the generous support of the Dutch Foundation for Visual Arts Architecture and Design.