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Edo Dijksterhuis

Interview with Wendelien van Oldenborgh: Between cinematic reality and polyphonic clash  
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10/6/14

Amsterdam, Oct. 2014: She felt honored to have been nominated for the Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Art. The list of previous recipients is impressive: Carel Visser, Peter Struycken, Mark Manders, and Daan van Golden are among them. With a cool 100,000 euro attached in prize money, it’s one of the biggest art awards in Europe (for comparison: Turner Prize winners get 40,000 pounds, roughly half of that amount). But Wendelien van Oldenborgh did not expect to win the award, which she received la... [more]

20140910145108-installation_view_007 For Marlene Dumas politics are always personal   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Marlene Dumas at Stedelijk Museum September 6th - January 4th, 2015
Posted 9/10/14

Since its long anticipated reopening in September 2012 the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam has served up some fine shows: The Mike Kelley retrospective was, if somewhat airtight, quite comprehensive, and Jeff Wall’s Tableaux Pictures Photographs 1996-2013 could easily compete with the grand overview nine years ago at Tate Modern. But with Marlene Dumas: The Image as Burden the museum has hit a new high point. The retrospective of the nation’s best-known painter is by far the best exhibiti... [more]

20140812101653-de_stad_de_stilte_3 The city as hardware, soft infrastructure, and idea   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Diane Arbus, Mitch Epstein, Walker Evans, Lee Friedlander, William Klein, Dana Lixenberg, Karl Hugo Schmölz, Ed van der Elsken, Michael Wolf at FotoMuseum Den Haag July 5th - October 12th
Posted 8/12/14

Horizontals, verticals, and some disciplined curves, squares and angles offset by relentless electrical streetlights. The wall with forty vintage photographs marking the start of The Rush and Calm, Moments in the City looks like an architect’s drawing table. Karl Hugo Schmölz’s 1950s documentation of German cinemas, orchestra houses, car dealerships, and shopping malls clearly illustrates the strong focus on hardware during the post-war Reconstruction period. They show the city as... [more]

20140806173431-06 Bringing private passions into the public realm   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Hai Bo, Zhang Dali, Wang Guangle, Ai Weiwei, Qiu Xiaofei, Zhang Xiaogang, LIANG Yuanwei at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen June 14th - September 21st
Posted 8/6/14

For the better part of their lives Henk de Heus and his wife Victoria de Heus-Zomer have worked to build up their business. The De Heus animal feed company has a hundred year history but it wasn’t until the last couple of decades that the family business from rural Barneveld boomed, becoming a world leader in animal nutrition, a multinational active in fifty countries. The de Heus-Zomer couple has invested a sizeable part of the resulting fortune in art. Since the late eighties they have col... [more]

20140724051947-1 Being a bit too breezy about the sky   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Constant, Anne de Vries, Leo Gestel, John Körmeling, Hendrik W. Mesdag, Jan Sluijters, Guido van der Werve, JCJ Vanderheyden, J.H. Weissenbruch, Carel Willink at De Hallen Haarlem June 21st - September 7th
Posted 7/24/14

Compiling an attractive and wholesome summer exhibition: it’s an art form in itself. During the cultural low season, when the regular audience has migrated to southern European beaches, museums hoping to maintain healthy visitor statistics choose to cater to tourists, staycationists, and day-trippers. And that requires a special type of show. Of course, the fun factor is to be reckoned with; the subject should not be too highbrow and instead have a broad, preferably universal appeal. Some couleur locale... [more]

20140719075720-chan_7_antietam_volumes_l We are all waiting for Godot in Paul Chan’s dark world   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Paul Chan at Schaulager April 12th - October 19th
Posted 7/19/14

Paul Chan, born in 1973, is a child of his time. He has cast aside modernism’s Big Ideas and is free of any kind of canon. He refers just as easily to French philosopher Charles Fourier (1772-1837) as he does to hip hop star Jay-Z. The Old Testament, hardcore porn, Samuel Beckett, daytime TV, the Black Panthers, Guy Debord and his Society of the Spectacle—for Chan this is all source material of equal value and utility. Chan is beyond postmodernism as well, though. He does not play non... [more]

20140619152617-sterling_ruby Diversity rules at 45th edition of the art market’s Olympics   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at Art Basel June 17th - June 22nd
Posted 6/19/14

Art fair participants complain, what’s new? But instead of the usual lamentations about hesitant collectors keeping their pocket books closed, this year dealers’ biggest worry was overly aggressive buyers. They just waltzed into a booth, pointed out a work and did not take no for an answer, even if the work had already been sold. This marks the cautious upswing in the art market which has been getting back up on its feet after being hit by the global financial crisis. Although Art Base... [more]

20140619073443-untitled_1970_c_larry_clark__courtesy_of_the_artist_and_luhring_augustine_new_york Shooting up on youth’s immortality   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Larry Clark at Foam - Fotografie Museum June 13th - September 12th
Posted 6/19/14

When Kids came out in 1995 it kicked up quite a storm. Larry Clark’s debut feature film depicts a group of teenage skate punks smoking dope, drinking excessively, shoplifting, talking nonsense, basically wasting their lives away. The main character, a world class egomaniac named Telly, has unprotected sex with every eleven year old girl he can talk out of her pants, since according to him virginity is the best protection against venereal diseases. At the end of the movie it turns out he himsel... [more]

Interview with Abner Preis: Hitting the heart with a story  
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6/16/14

Amsterdam, Jun. 2014: The first time I met Abner Preis was at Scope in Miami. He succeeded in making me and my companion dress up like superheroes: masks, oversized gloves, glittery capes, and a fluffy toy animal as a personal mascot. While we were assuming our best victory poses Preis was snapping away. Still, whenever I look at the picture he sent me afterwards I have to smile and part of me feels the urge to leave my everyday Clark Kent incarnation in a nearby phone booth and go rescue a school... [more]

20140605101458-bikini_bar Stripping life down to its bare essentials   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Vrijstaat at Kasteel Keukenhof June 1st - October 1st
Posted 6/5/14

The Keukenhof is under siege. Across the road from the world famous flower park, both tourist magnet and symbol of bourgeois dowdiness, two men are loading a howitzer. There’s no mistaking the trajectory of this Big Bertha—the nearby sea of tulips is going to get blown to smithereens. The men are faceless and featureless, like anonymous puppets blindly following orders, ready to become cannon fodder themselves. They are very basic archetypes, just like the hut sitting on the lawn a f... [more]

20140521151156-image_1 Marcel van Eeden: Murder he drew   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Marcel van Eeden at GEM, The Hague May 16th - August 24th
Posted 5/21/14

Marcel van Eeden’s work is all about time, but it always starts with a location. In his series of drawings van Eeden tells stories taking place roughly between World War I and 1965, the year of his own birth. Drawing from photographs, advertisements, and, less frequently, short texts, he creates the building blocks of a partially true and partially fictional history. With every new episode, which doesn’t necessarily follow chronology but always connects with the others and often features... [more]

20140515074534-mgb14_p_ai_weiwei_portrait_2012_c_gao_yuan The exhibition as exhibit in a public trial: Ai Weiwei's Evidence   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Ai Weiwei at Martin-Gropius-Bau April 3rd - July 13th
Posted 5/15/14

Evidence, Ai Weiwei’s largest retrospective to date, opened on April 3rd and that is no coincidence. It was exactly three years ago that day that the most influential artist of China (some argue: of the world) was arrested at the Beijing Capital International Airport and jailed on charges of “economic crimes.” He was released after eighty-one days but has since been forbidden to leave Beijing. For every step outside his own courtyard he has to ask the police for permission, effec... [more]

20140507170641-_bwc3792 Reinventing the museum as a relevant social arena   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at Stedelijk Museum 's-Hertogenbosch March 8th - June 15th
Posted 5/7/14

“The coming twenty years we’ll be okay, with all the baby boomers retiring. But after that we’ll have to come up with a different way of doing things otherwise museums will soon be obsolete.” It was Arnoud Odding, director of Rijksmuseum Twenthe, who said this when I asked him about the most pressing priorities in the Dutch art sector. Odding has given the subject a lot of thought. In 2004 he published Het Gedroomde Museum (The Dream Museum), about the museum as a place for... [more]

20140422095135-sam_durant Homage to the fair’s most important asset   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Stanley Brouwn, Ross Chisholm, Nigel Cooke, Thierry De Cordier, William Daniels, Hans Op de Beeck, Sam Durant, Simon Fujiwara, Jacob Kassay, Sol LeWitt, Lucy McKenzie, Juan Muñoz, Rob Pruitt, Wilhelm Sasnal, Jan Schoonhoven, Nick van Woert, Matthew Weir, Haegue Yang at Art Brussels April 24th - April 27th
Posted 4/21/14

It was in the mid-eighties that the organizers of Art Brussels approached Amsterdam’s KunstRAI—later known as Art Amsterdam—with a proposition to merge the two fairs. Both events were then only a few years old and scraping along in a slowly developing art market. The new event would take place alternatingly in the Dutch and the Belgian capital. The Northern party declined. In 2007 Art Cologne changed its date from fall to spring. The world’s oldest fair for modern and c... [more]

20140326170646-c-viviane-sassen-zone-01-umbra-series-2014 A peddler of abnormal pictures   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Viviane Sassen at Nederlands Fotomuseum March 8th - June 1st
Posted 3/26/14

“Shadow is built like a cattle rustler’s dream girl: long-legged, long-armed, long-framed,” writes Moses Isegawa in a story in Flamboya, Viviane Sassen’s 2008 photobook. It’s not hard to recognize the photographer herself in this fictitious character – Sassen is tall, with a model’s figure. Moreover, Isegawa, author of the Abyssinian Chronicles (1998), describes Shadow as “a nomad,” qualifies the photographs she shows him as “abnormal,&rd... [more]

20140326165229-ola_lanko Corporate Collections: on the threshold of a new type of patronage   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 3/26/14

Some 45,000 works of art. That’s the number of artworks owned by the twenty member companies and institutions upon the 2005 launch of the Vereniging Bedrijfscollecties Nederland (VBCN – Netherlands Association of Corporate Collections). That’s half as many as the Stedelijk Museum has on display and in storage. Less than nine years later the number stands at roughly 100,000 works of art and the ranks of the VBCN have swollen to forty-six. Suffice it to say, corporate collections in... [more]

20140313071313-jw_invisible_man_by_ralp_ellison__the_prologue_1999-2000_transparencyinlightbox_174x250_5cm_courtesytheartist Bending the frame of photography: Jeff Wall tweaks reality   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Jeff Wall at Stedelijk Museum March 1st - August 3rd
Posted 3/13/14

The Jeff Wall show at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam contains fewer works than the large retrospective held at Tate Modern in 2005-2006 – the score is thirty-seven against more than fifty. Also, it covers a shorter period than the London presentation of two and a half decades of work. And there is some serious overlap with the older show. Still, the Amsterdam exhibition is probably the better. Jeff Wall 1978-2004 at Tate Modern followed a largely chronological path. It led visitors through the art... [more]

20140218134449-paolo_icaro In Madrid young is sometimes old, sometimes French, but mostly from Berlin   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at ARCO Madrid February 19th - February 23rd
Posted 2/18/14

For about two decades now the qualifications “young,” “emerging,” and “new” have functioned as the ultimate buzzwords, inspiring a Pavlovian rustle of checkbooks amongst collectors “buying with their ears.” No wonder art fairs have latched onto the phenomenon by creating special sections dedicated to gallery start-ups. At Frieze it’s called Frame; Art Brussels has Young; Art Rotterdam’s got a New Art Section. And there is, of course, LISTE, the fair designed from the start to showcase the lates... [more]

20140204001434-20140203170241-marleen_sleeuwits Art Rotterdam’s Great Leap Forward   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at Art Rotterdam February 6th - February 9th
Posted 2/3/14

Fifteen years into the game Art Rotterdam has comfortably settled into the role of top contemporary art fair in the Netherlands. But director Fons Hof is not resting on his laurels. Edition 2014 signals a Great Leap Forward. This is to be taken quite literally as the fair is moving from the Cruise Terminal on the Kop van Zuid to the monumental Van Nellefabriek. The new venue, with its peripheral location bringing to mind Frieze New York, has a lot going for it: the catering – slow and poor... [more]

The perpetual motion of power: Interview with Kudzanai Chiurai  
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2/2/14

Amsterdam, Feb. 2014: You could see almost all visitors of Hauptbahnhof Kassel do a double take when confronted with Kudzanai Chiurai’s contribution to dOCUMENTA(13). Is it a photograph or did I just detect motion? No, yes, no, there’s definitely something stirring, very much slowed down but alive it is. And then the quaintness of what is being shown kicks in. It’s a contemporary African version of The Last Supper with witchdoctors, machine gun wielding rebels, and cool urbanites... [more]

20140129110245-rob_hornstra_-_shiprestaurant In the shadow of Putin’s prestige project   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Rob Hornstra at Huis Marseille Museum voor Fotografie December 14th, 2013 - March 9th
Posted 1/29/14

Making waves early on as the first Dutch photography student to graduate with a limited edition artist’s book and being recognized as a prodigy by the likes of Martin Parr, Rob Hornstra has always received his fair share of attention. But these last couple of weeks the spotlight has been considerably brighter. The reason: the upcoming Winter Olympic Games. For over five years Hornstra, together with writer Arnold van Bruggen, has traveled throughout the Caucasus to document the “reali... [more]

20140115141522-dance_still_04 Of the city and its melancholy   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Hans Op de Beeck at Museum Arnhem December 7th, 2013 - March 30th
Posted 1/15/14

With Hans Op de Beeck it’s all about feelings. The Flemish artist’s main aim in life is to evoke a smile, a tear, relief, elation, anger, anything but emotional dullness. In his construction of mood-inducing stages, his chosen medium, he knows almost no restrictions, except for his own perfectionism. His eye for detail and love for craftsmanship are just as present in his small black-and-white watercolors as in the eighty square-meter installation Merry-go-round (2005), which features a... [more]

Renaming the World: An Interview with Michael Tedja  
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1/12/14

Amsterdam, Jan. 2014: Few contemporary artists are as productive and versatile as Michael Tedja. The speed at which he paints and draws is nearly frantic; his output is enormous in quantity and size. But that’s only one aspect of his artistry. He has recorded music and lectures, published two novels and regularly submits essays to national and international magazines. Besides this he is active as a curator, runs a publishing company (DFI Publishers), and has over the years become a fixtur... [more]

20131203191446-radiant_bodies_and_unreal_aliens Too much of a good thing?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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De Ateliers Galleries Akinci, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Trouw Amsterdam, Galerie Paul Andriesse, Borzo modern & contemporary art, Jeanine Hofland Contemporary Art, VZL / Contemporary Art, Boetzelaer|Nispen, Witteveen Visual Art Centre, Ellen de Bruijne Projects, Stigter Van Doesburg, EYE, International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA), Annet Gelink Gallery, Flatland Gallery, Lumen Travo Gallery, Ornis A. Gallery, Upstream Gallery, Galerie Van Gelder, Grimm, Gerhard Hofland, Juliette Jongma, De Oude Kerk, Galerie Ron Mandos, Manifesta, Galerie Onrust, Castrum Peregrini, Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam Others Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht, Galerie Gabriel Rolt, Slewe, C&H Art Space, tegenboschvanvreden, Torch, Artist residencies Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Galerie Wouter van Leeuwen, Martin van Zomeren Institutes/Museums de Appel arts centre, Galerie Fons Welters at Capital A November 29th, 2013 - December 1st, 2013
Posted 12/3/13

How much space do you need to organize an art fair? Not much, prove galleries Boetzelaer|Nispen and Jeanine Hofland. In their modest adjoining spaces, on fewer square meters than measures an average family home, they set up A Petite Fair. Twelve young international galleries showed work by as many artists. The flavor was overwhelmingly neo-conceptual, ranging from Bas van den Hurk’s poetic experiments with dyes and textiles and Oliver Michaels’ black-and-white photographs of bizarre... [more]

20131129164942-2 Filling in a blank in the image bank   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Kerry James Marshall at MuHKA Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp October 4th, 2013 - February 2nd
Posted 11/29/13

In the eyes of European curators and collectors, Kerry James Marshall is a quintessentially African-American artist, dealing with the idiosyncrasies of a place far removed from the Old World. Maybe I’m exaggerating, but this can be the only explanation for the complete absence of Marshall’s work in European museum collections. Only two private collectors, one in London and one in Amsterdam, have actually bought paintings by the artist who in the United States is considered one of the g... [more]

20131106122141-_dsc3114 Just cute doesn’t cut it anymore   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Sayaka Abe, Genpei Akasegawa, Ryoko Aoki, Kaoru Arima, Chim↑Pom, Takahiko Iimura, Zon Ito, Masaru Iwai, Takahiro Iwasaki, Teppei Kaneuji, Tsubasa Kato, Junko KIDO, Takayoshi Kitagawa, Kengo Kito, Fumiko Kobayashi, Yamashita + Kobayashi, Meiro Koizumi, Mami Kosemura, Shimon Minamikawa, HIDENORI MITSUE, Toshihiko Mitsuya, Yumiko Morisue, Shinji Ohmaki, Katsumi Omori, Hiroe Saeki, Ataru Sato, KEI TAKEMURA, Kazuyuki Takezaki, Keiichi Tanaami, Yuken Teruya, Momoyo Torimitsu, Naoyuki Tsuji, Ryohei Usui, Finger Pointing Worker, Masao Yamamoto, Ryohei Yanagihara, Yuichi Yokoyama at Kunsthal KAdE September 21st, 2013 - February 2nd
Posted 11/6/13

From a monitor a man in a hazmat suit points his finger at us. Close by, the worrying crackle of a Geiger counter sounds. Two steps into Now Japan, at Kunsthal KAdE in Amersfoort, the most urgent parameters of present-day life in Japan are forced upon the visitor. This is a nation dealing with the aftermath of a devastating tsunami and the resulting meltdown of the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Its artists deal with the fallout in their own way. The suited man in the video, an anonymous artist... [more]

20131031081539-tino_sehgal_2 Holding up a mirror to an awakening art market   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Tino Sehgal at Ullens Center for Contemporary Art September 27th, 2013 - November 17th, 2013
Posted 10/31/13

There is a reason why there are no pictures of art works accompanying this article. Tino Sehgal does not allow his work to be documented in the form of script, film, or photograph. Sehgal’s work consists of performances, putting him in the category of ultra-ephemeral, verging on the mythical. When a Sehgal-piece gets sold – his dealer, Marian Goodman Gallery, has them on offer in editions of four or six – the deal has to be sealed by the artist himself in a conversation with the... [more]

20131023162035-ikoiko_from_the_series_the_afronauts_2012_c_cristina_de_middel Black power in a parallel universe   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Cristina De Middel at Foam - Fotografie Museum September 13th, 2013 - December 11th, 2013
Posted 10/23/13

The Russians had Laika and Yuri Gagarin, respectively first dog and first man in space. The Americans hit back with Neil Armstrong, who made his small step/giant leap onto the moon’s surface. But both superpowers could easily have been eclipsed by Zambia, if only it had been up to Edward Makuka Nkoloso. In the early sixties, this village schoolteacher, who styled himself Director of the Zambia National Academy of Space Research, had developed a full-blown plan to win the space race. Neither... [more]

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