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Art Rotterdam

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20160208111622-press8

In Ryan Mendoza’s Detroit House, Debris of a Financial Collapse Turns into Relief Aid

by Edo Dijksterhuis
Is it a sculpture? A political indictment? A social activist gesture? Or maybe some form of contemporary historiography? It’s not really clear how to define or classify Ryan Mendoza’s Detroit House. One thing’s for sure, though: it’s not a house. You could easily be fooled into thinking it is. It’s got a roof, walls, a porch, windows, and a door you can enter through. It lacks, however, neighbors, a path or driveway leading up to it, a connection to the local power grid, a foundation—in short: physical and social context. It has been plonked in front of the Van Nellefabriek... [more]
Posted by Edo Dijksterhuis on 2/11
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A Cross Section of Intersections: 1646, Hotel Maria Kapel, and A Tale of a Tub

by Manus Groenen
Rotterdam’s Van Nellefabriek—once a factory for processing coffee, tea, and tobacco—is one of the Netherlands’ most impressive modernist monuments. This concrete and steel colossus, with its imposing glass façade, was progressive in its use of light, air, and space, and in its attention to working conditions. Art Rotterdam moved to this UNESCO World Heritage Site and event complex in 2014. This year, the fair’s 16th edition does justice to the site’s legacy of innovation with the introduction of Intersections: an exhibition sector devoted to non-profi... [more]
Posted by Manus Groenen on 2/5/15
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Spotlight on DordtYart, an Arts Organization Where Synergy Is the Gospel

by Edo Dijksterhuis
DordtYart is not part of Art Rotterdam’s Intersections program—and with good reason. DordtYart could never be squeezed into the box labeled “artists’ initiative or non-profit space.” The organization from Dordrecht does stage exhibitions, which are often enriched with lectures and guided tours, but it does a lot more: it functions as an artists’ residency, a community workplace, a mirror for local history, an educational center, and a laboratory for crossbreeding science and art. DordtYart is the perfect amalgam of artistic, social, and economic ambitions that fund... [more]
Posted by Edo Dijksterhuis on 2/4/15
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Art Rotterdam’s Great Leap Forward

by Edo Dijksterhuis
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 at the old location – is now controlled by the fair itself; the numerous side-shows can easily be accommoda... [more]
Posted by Edo Dijksterhuis on 2/3/14
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On Escape Routes and Solo Exhibitions

by Andrea Alessi
I’ve had a soft spot for Art Rotterdam ever since the first time I attended. Pausing to drink a coffee (Illy no doubt) and consolidate notes on what I’d so far seen, I looked out one of the former Holland America Line Cruise Terminal’s giant windows to have my tired gaze met by the spectacular Erasmus Bridge. Visitors, this is my advice to you: no matter how disoriented, claustrophobic, or weary you get collecting business cards and taking mnemonic photographs of artwork you are soon to forget, the looming view of the bridge will always sort you out. It’s a lifeline assuring you the world has no... [more]
Posted by Andrea Alessi on 2/5/13
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In Rotterdam: Art Fairs and Off-Events

by Nicola Bozzi
Art fairs are the perfect excuse to visit a city. Because, let's face it, those big cluttered pavilions can only be exciting for so many hours. Rotterdam - considered the gateway to Europe with its large port and bustling industry - is one of those cities you discover little by little, usually with the pretext of visiting this or that art venue. And, despite the spectacularly unattractive city center, the resulting picture portrays a place that, if unevenly fascinating, does have its perks when it comes to art. It's true that most of them concentrate in the hip Witte de With area, but exhibit... [more]
Posted by Nicola Bozzi on 2/8/12
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The MK Award

by Andrea Alessi
Not typically known for its art so much as its industry, Rotterdam can seem, to the uninitiated, an unlikely art city. But to anyone paying attention, this haven holds its own against historically art-centered neighbors like Amsterdam and Haarlem. One of the best things about Art Rotterdam is that it presents the annual opportunity for the city to bring its exceptional contemporary art scene into focus for visitors both local and global alike. Until last year, no art tour of Rotterdam would have been complete without a trip to MKgalerie, located on Wittedewithstraat, right in the heart of the... [more]
Posted by Andrea Alessi on 2/8/12
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Art Rotterdam 2010

by Andrea Alessi
I had finally succumbed to an inevitable, though bravely fought-off cold. Wandering the aisles of Art Rotterdam, one of the largest art fairs in the Netherlands, I felt spaced-out, divided. While it would be easy to credit my disoriented experience to my health, I blame the fair. I know some people thrive in this frenetic fair environment, taking in the over-stimulating social scene (and perhaps even some art), but I am not one of them. The artworks feel unmoored from any context save a commercial one. They taunt me when I try to pin them down, evading my contemplation. They seem to exi... [more]
Posted by Andrea Alessi on 2/8/10