ABN AMRO Art Award 2016

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Marijn van Kreij, 'Picasso grids' © Courtesy of the Artist and Hermitage Amsterdam
ABN AMRO Art Award 2016

Postbus 11675
1001 GR Amsterdam
November 24th, 2016 - May 28th, 2017

Sun-Sat 10-5


New series of 'Picasso grids' on view in exhibition by ABN AMRO Art Award winner Van Kreij

Reclining Nude with Man Playing the Guitar on view at Hermitage Amsterdam from 24.11.2016 through 28.5.2017

In Marijn van Kreij’s multifaceted oeuvre, consisting of drawings, paintings, collages, videos and installations, the process of duplication plays a key role. In his work, Van Kreij finds a connection with historical work by artists from the past – the legacy of modernism in particular – as well as with music and visual culture in the broader sense. Reflecting on ideas around repetition and autonomy, his work often forms a response to existing works of art or involves collaborations with other artists, designers, writers or musicians.

The presentation Reclining Nude with Man Playing the Guitar, by Marijn van Kreij, has been composed around a new series of monumental paintings on paper, 'Picasso grids', in which the artist carefully chooses details from late paintings of Picasso to serve as a point of departure. Van Kreij copies the fragments meticulously and arranges them into a single repetitive pattern of stacked horizontal rows. These sketchy images, not immediately recognizable, give rise to questions about the meaning of copying itself. The details remain the same and yet are different every time. This conveys a sense of repetition that falls somewhere between obsession and meditation.

The painted details found in the ‘grids’ are actually all derived from Picasso’s paintings of his studio. In the exhibition Van Kreij presents the studio as a place where an artist can find seclusion, and from there, face the world anew. He zooms in on part of a window, for instance, and thus brings the in- and outside world together. A varied selection of stools collected by the artist over time, ranging from Rietveld to Ikea, have been scattered throughout the space and evoke the atmosphere of a studio.

Van Kreij wishes to actively involve us in the exhibition: we’re invited to play the song Go Folks, Go van Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and the Cairo Gang, so that we can look at the works again, from a different viewpoint. What begins as a poetic love song, full of playful inversions, ends with the exhortation: 'go folks, go forth, trust your brain, trust your body'. Precisely because the 'grids' seem to negate any form of development, he places the question with the viewer: 'What do we actually mean by progress nowadays?’ Without offering definitive answers, Marijn van Kreij makes us reflect on personal development and, almost in passing, questions our Western belief in progress.

Marijn van Kreij

Marijn van Kreij (1978, Middelrode) studied at the Akademie voor Kunst en Vormgeving St. Joost in Breda (1999-2003) and at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (2005-06). Since then his work has been shown in various solo exhibitions at, among others, the Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam (2008), De Hallen Haarlem (2011) and AND/OR in London (2013). Work by Marijn van Kreij can be found in major collections, including that of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the Centraal Museum Utrecht and the Bonnefantenmuseum Maastricht.

ABN AMRO Art Award

The ABN AMRO Art Award aims to be a stimulus for talent in the Netherlands. The quality and singularity of the work are principal criteria. The winner receives an exhibition at the Hermitage Amsterdam accompanied by a catalogue and a monetary award of 10,000 euros. An acquisition of the artist’s work is also made for the ABN AMRO art collection. The ABN AMRO Art Award was awarded to Fahrettin Örenli in 2004, Eylem Aladogan in 2005, Ryan Gander in 2006, Melissa Gordon in 2007 and Melvin Moti in 2015.

Jury ABN AMRO Art Award 2016

Jury Members for the 2016 ABN AMRO Art Award were: Lex ter Braak (director of the Jan van Eyck Academy Maastricht), Danila Cahen (curator of the ABN AMRO Art collection), Bart Rutten (Head of Collections, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam), Berend Strik (visual artist) and Silvia Zonneveld (Managing Director ABN AMRO MeesPierson/Private Wealth Management).
For the complete jury report, click here.

ABN AMRO Partner of the Future

The ABN AMRO Art Award for 2016 is part of the bank's ‘Partner of the Future’ sponsorship programme, which focuses on the support and development of talent in the domains of sport, art and culture. ABN AMRO strives to help people discover their talents and achieve their ambitions, and the intention of the art award is to give talented artists a chance for further growth and a platform for reaching a broad public.


Reclining Nude with Man Playing the Guitar will be accompanied by an exhibition catalogue containing the complete ‘Picasso grids’; included is an essay from Bettina Funcke (New York-based art historian and writer), a contribution from Nickel van Duyvenboden (artist and writer), and a foreword by Joop Wijn (member of the ABN AMRO Managing Board). Additionally, a ‘phonosheet’ (a phonograph single on thin plastic) of Go Folks, Go, by Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and the Cairo Gang, is part of this unique artist's publication, designed by Irma Boom Office. (NL/EN)

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