Going back in time: Daniel Gould’s 3D List, Art in Amsterdam #71
This is the end my friend...They were the days we thought would never end...Or words to the effect. What it all means is that we are at the end of the Amsterdam Art Season of 2012-2013. There isn't too much good to say about it; a lack of money in the market place hit the art market like a cannon ball taking out a Fiat 500. The gore was a lot of red ink all over the place. Perhaps the only good news is that it can't get any worse! Oppps...3D doesn't have ESP so it is only a hopeful conjecture.
Look at the reviews in this final list of the season. Maybe something will grab your interest. Maybe you'll go and check out the artist and maybe, just maybe, you'll BUY something. Hey, is that the meaning of life summed up in one word: Maybe!
Bits and Pieces:
Museum Review: The New RijksMuseum
Jewish Historical Museum, Philip Mechanicus
Concert: World Minimal Music Festival
Restaurant Review: ROASTERZ
What You Have Missed: The exhibitions that were...and many still are...
BITS & PIECES:
De Ateliers (Stadhouderskade 86) has opened "off-spring 2013" which features 12 of their resident artists. It is curated by Francesco Stocchi. It will close on the 2nd of June. (Damn, too late.) Expect to see conceptual art in many styles, but there is little in the way of traditional forms like painting and drawing. https://www.de-ateliers.nl/
The best group exhibition of any year is set to open on the 3rd of July at Gerrit Rietveld Academie (Fred. Roeskestraat 96) at 16:00 until 21:00. It will run through Sunday. Don't miss it!
Also the Sandberg Institute will have its last exam at NASA from 2nd to 7th July. See: https://sandberg.nl/
for more info.
Can there be worse news than the following for any lover of culture? The KIT Library of the Tropenmuseum, Amsterdam's ethnographic and multicultural museum, has been "hit hard by budget cuts. Over half the staff will lose their jobs and the research library with publications dating from 1400 will simply shut down." Hey, Mark-the-Shark, this is taking austerity too far. And a loss of half of the jobs. How many people is that that will no longer be paying taxes, contributing to the general economy and will now be collecting benefits? It doesn't compute...Kid you not!
But you can contribute to preventing this disaster by signing a petition.You need not be Dutch nor even living in Holland; just cultural and socially aware is enough of a qualification. 40,000 signatures are needed by 30th June. There are, as of 27th May, 8,500. Sign on at:
www.petities.nl/petitie/hou-het-tropenmuseum-open. Do it TODAY!
The Club of Amsterdam's next program is: The Future of Urban Gardening on the 27th of June at Museum Kelvin (Keizersgracht 633). For more info check out their website: www.ClubofAmsterdam.com
Coming up---and worth making a note about it in your agenda---is: Amsterdam Drawing, 2013. This will be the second edition and will run from 19th to 22nd September at the NDSM-werf. 40 galleries and several from outside of the Netherlands have signed on. More info at: https://bit.ly/2N5r42h
LIFE-The Gallery (Lauriergracht 94) offers "LIFE drawing" in their workshop on Fridays. A nude model poses from 11 to 13:30. The cost is 15 euro. More info at:
3D got a press release from the gallery CNCPT13 (Prinsengracht 266) which said that during the month of April---they were open every day---their exhibition of 3D technology, in action, attracted 70,000 visitors. Huh? 3D though it a misprint and asked for verification. The gallery holder reported that it is an estimate made from reviewing the number of people recorded going in and out of the space by TV camera. They said, there were 154,000 in and outs. Well, 3D, in his review, did describe it as a groundbreaking exhibition.
You like Donald Judd? Then check out this article by Alice Rawsthorn (www.iht.com, 3rd June) titled, "Donald Judd and the art of living."
Laser 3.14 says "She tried life now she wants to taste some death." "Some death?" How do you do that? Seen at: Noodermarkt 31
3D ignores FACEBOOK...I am only a "friend" to my children and grandchildren and a couple of former lovers. Anyway, I clicked on to one "page" and that lead to another page---not sure how I found my way---and it was for someone named "George Takie." He has a lot---and I do mean, a lot---of "one page messages" with pithy captions. Here's two that stood out: Pictured was an American lesbian comedian. The caption read: "Do we have to know who's gay and who's straight? Can't we just love everybody and judge them by the car they drive?" Well, yes, that is typically American. Another pictures a tombstone with this engraved into the granite: "A Gay Vietnam Veteran: When I was in the military they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one."
...Austerity...I seem to have glossed over that so far. Well, it continues to take its toll: N.B. The TropenMuseum. And on the other side of the Atlantic, Obama's stimulus program, of 2009, has put the auto industry back on the road. "US automakers have reported that March sales of new cars and trucks in the US were the highest in five years." The April report said that auto sales were up 8% from the year before...The USofA reported that in May it added 175,000 new jobs...And maybe, here in Europe, the message that austerity doesn't work is getting through to the powers that be. This from www.iht.com, 30th May, "...loosening leash, E.U. gives 7 states leeway on deficit," by, James Kanter. "Backing away from tough austerity policies blamed for millions of Europeans out-of-work, top E.U. officials said Wednesday [29th May] that they would ease off on pushing countries to cut their budget...to meet mandatory deficit targets." The article went on to identify the countries, five of which will have two additional years. "The Netherlands, Belgium and Portugal will have an additional year." Hey, guys, you're only stalling. We need stimulus!...And in the Netherlands...Auto sales continue to fall along with home sales. Mark-the-Shark ain't getting the job done!
Ten years and 375+ million euro for the renovation, reconstruction and restoration of the RijksMuseum and what do you get? A masterpiece, restored.
There are only a few handfuls of people who can appreciate what really went into this project. From the outside, little could be seen during the restoration but if you compare that with what went on on the inside, well...In essence, the interior was nearly completely gutted. A new foundation, for the interior, was installed using state-of-the-art concrete which dries in water to replace many of the 8,000 poles originally used----500 alone were replaced from the central courtyard which supported added buildings not part of the original construction. Only those that support the walls and exterior of the building remain.
I did do "hard-hat" tours during the period of reconstruction. I was amazed at the amount of construction and equipment required which was necessary to create the new entrance. However, even some of the most demanding and necessary elements to the construction were not visible like the 500-meter-long energy and IT ring around the building; that, and state-of-art security, cost, alone, 100 million euro. The last tour was January 2012 when we were shown the new terrazzo floor that had been put into place in The Great Hall. I watched restorers repainting the columns and thought: Will it really be ready on time?
Two new wings, of an avant grade architectural design, have been built on the grounds. And there is a newly landscaped garden. After a while you wonder how all this was done for so "little" money? Think of this: Over the years, successive museum directors had changed a great deal [of the interior] from blocking windows to cramming the two inner courtyards with buildings, "the outside was still reasonably intact but the interior had been completely maltreated. It was unrecognizable, a maze, one lost one's way." All true!
Cruz y Ortiz, a Spanish firm, did the interior design; working with museum officials to placate their needs that could be melded into engineering restraints required by the building itself. But they also had a motto: "Continue with Cuypers." It was a group effort and one that was not without difficulty when the bureaucratic elements came into play; not to mention the public reaction when it was announced that the passage way, through the museum, would be eliminated for the new entrance. Public reaction was negative to that and it held up matters for about three years. There are those who argue that the public should not have gotten what they wanted. Personally, I am happy, once again, to ride my bike through the passage way; and I think that it makes the museum a physically more open building instead of one with a green moat around it. You interactive with it without going through the door and you can do it 24/7.
The museum's original architect, Pierre Cuypers, was a Roman Catholic. Normally, religion seldom has any influence on architectural design unless you are building a church. The Rijks is an anomaly. Cuypers was noted, at the time, for his churches---Catholic---that he designed throughout the Netherlands. Some are still standing in Amsterdam; he also designed the Central Station. At the time of the building, there was already a vocal dissent to what some perceived as a design based on the layout for a Catholic Church. Specifically, The Great Hall and the Gallery of Honor which leads up to the "altar" which displays Rembrandt's iconic Night Watch. At the time of its original opening the King of the Netherlands refused to attend "the Papist shrine." Even now, 125+ years later, Moshe Zwarts, a 76 year old architect, says he dislikes the museum's "intense and Catholic character....Great Dutch artists like Rembrandt and Frans Hals would turn in their grave if they knew where they'd been all this time...People laugh when I say this but I mean it. And what has this renovation done? It is emphasizing the museum's Catholic character even more." That just goes to prove the axiom: its all in the eyes of the beholder. Personally, as someone who had been in the same Catholic church for over 4,000 times---my schooling, from grade 1 to 12, began with the Mass---I can honestly say I don't see this "Catholic character."
But let us make a tour of the 80 galleries, on four floors, that now exhibit 8,000 works of art----from a total collection numbering over 1,000,000 pieces---plus objects of art and items of craftsmanship which are arranged in chronological order to tell the story of 800 years of Dutch art, culture and society. And in a user friendly way. Only one work was returned to its original location: The Night Watch. And that's fitting because Cuypers did design the museum around that one piece.
The old entrance has disappeared. The new entrance is at the center of 13 separate galleries which comprises the museum special collection dating from 1000AD to 1600AD. From Italian Renaissance, to Delftware, Dutch porcelain, arms, ship models, etc. It is an easy stroll through each gallery since they are all interconnected.
The first floor chronicles the years 1800 through 1900 showing Breitner, Van Gogh, prints, romanticism, Meissen and Dutch painting.
Ah, the second floor...You enter the Great Hall and your first impression is Why is it so empty? If you were a frequent visitor before the restoration, this will be your reaction. The Great Hall had originally contained the gift shop/book store. They are now at one end of the new entrance level. What you now see is one complete and integrated interior masterpiece design. The old terrazzo floor was removed and, working with original architectural drawings, a new one was installed with the mosaics made in Italy. The huge space is open and the stained glass windows stand out like they never did before. The decorations which you once overlooked are like new discoveries. It is breathtaking!
Then you enter the Gallery of Honor which was always to me a bit stuffy. The stuffiness seems to have gone away and it is something of a mystery since the walls have all been painted a blue-gray which the French interior designer, Jean-Michel Wilmotte, says brings out the colors of a painting more effectively. There is one negative factor in the Gallery of Honor. Along the walls, directly below the ceiling, are a series of paintings, however they are in shadow. No spots illuminate them. But it is not what the space is all about since it hangs the museum's Rembrandts, Vermeers, Steens and Hals all of which is our lead-in to The Night Watch. In a word: Spectacular.
While, for the most part, the old labyrinth which had to be navigated carefully in various parts of the museum has disappeared there is one exception and that's floor three which is concerned with the years 1900 to 1950. There are two spaces/sections and each with several galleries. Unfortunately, you can't go from one section to the next without taking an elevator back down to the main entrance level. There you cross the lobby and catch another lift. Obviously, because of the original architecture there was no better solution. Pity, because this section of the museum is well worth the visit and in many ways it is unexpected because of the "modernism" of the collection displayed.
If you take the time and trouble will will see odds items life a Nazi chess set. The pawns are soldiers and there are cannons, cavalry, planes, a bomb, an howitzer and tanks. Scary. There is even a full size airplane on display. It is a single seat fighter the FK-123, from 1918, designed by Frits Koolhover (Dutch, 1886-1946). Don't miss the big collection of Man Ray's Ray-O-Graphs. Also you will see the COBRA school, Rietveld, Mondrian, et al. Like I said, well worth the effort.
Liner notes are excellent and your are encouraged to read them. About one paragraph long they detail specific points concerning the work on display and should be taken advantage of.
The coffee shop/restaurant is at the entrance level. It overlooks from its perch the central courtyard. Directly below it is the gift shop/bookstore. The latter is well stocked with gift items and the postcard rack takes up an entire wall. At first I was taken back by how few books were on display. It was only later that I discovered another, and lower level where the books are actually housed. A very big collection it is.
There are a few negatives. The main toilet area is on the entry floor. But there is confusion with the icons. As I was approaching the toilets I saw the man, directly ahead of me, stop and inspect the icons and then made a turn into the women's toilet. On two of the other floors there are two toilets each, but hard to find.
A publication that is well worth reading is SMAAK. It tells the story, in both Dutch and English, every thing about The New RijksMuseum. Blad Voor De Rijkshuisvesting/April 2013/Jaargang 13. It is complete and well illustrated.
A real positive point for the new Rijks is that children "18 years of age and under" enter FREE. They got that right. Hopefully other Amsterdam museums will follow their lead. Also, there is a staff of 68 tour guides available, and on call, conducting tours in 10+ languages.
The RijksMuseum is back on a well deserved pedestal; a world class building with a world class collection.
The museum will be opened 365 days per year.
Jewish Historical Museum: Philip Mechanicus (1936-2005)
He will be remembered for his perceptive and moving photographic portraits of Dutch writers, actors/actresses, poets & artists that he captured in b/w. You will see the leading representatives of these various disciplines at the new show at the Jewish Historical Museum. His worked was used in various Dutch publications from newspapers to magazines. His subjects are not smiling but from time to time there is humor interjected into the posing. Also on view are photos of the Nieuw Markt area during the 50s and 60s which was the neighborhood he grew up in. Until 27th October
There is a photo book that was done for the exhibition: Het straatjongensboek (Uitgeverij Lubberhuizen) with 70 photo reproductions of children on the streets of Amsterdam during the 50s and 60s. (14.95 euro)
A special feature of the exhibition is that until the 3rd of July, 19 large panels, with photographs, will be installed in the Waterlooplein area and "in exactly the same spots where he originally took the photos." Register for the walk at: firstname.lastname@example.org and see the route at: www.jhm.nl/thenandnow
Nieuwe Amstelstraat 1
CONCERT: World Minimal Music Festival.
Minimal music isn't for every one's taste but the first concert, in this five day festival, was sold out weeks before the performance. It was presented by Holland's own Louis Andriessen. The festival included film, talk shows, dj's and more.
What is minimal music? To the average person its oeuvre consist of composers like Philip Glass, Steve Reich and John Adams. To those with an educated ear for the genre it is much more. It is impossible to anticipate what you might hear. The magic of the genre is that simple variations of musical themes can be performed in infinite ways. The group "eight blackbirds" and Lunapark used their instruments like just another anatomical extension and somehow brought it all together in a unified form. How do you explain something like this: Two people sit on the same bench and at the same piano. Their posture is perfectly correct in a rigid sort of way. Suddenly, both fell forward with an arm and their heads striking the keyboard. They would remain motionless while the sounds slowly disintegrated. Then, once again, they raised their heads into a perfect posture position and after ten or 15 seconds did it all over again. There was more. At one point, they emulated the children's game of patty-cake, patty cake, bakers' man and slapped hands together for the percussion.
To get back to the question: What is minimal music? You might have thought you were in the wrong hall, at the Muziekgebouw, as you listened to Konono a group from the former Belgium Congo. And if you are one of those who says, "Minimal music isn't my cup of tea!" That's a pity because it explores musical themes often in their purity. Where improvisational jazz expands musical themes, minimal music can establish sounds that reflect many aspects of rhythm, beat and melody. Conono consisted of two bongo players; one standard drummer with two cymbals; two "finger pianos," which are held in the hand; and a vocalist. But they swung with rhythms associated with rock and roll. The drum playing and the beat and rhythm were echos of Missa Luba. The latter was a Congolese tribe that recorded the Catholic Mass (c.1960) which is a classic.
An did someone say you can't dance to minimal music? Well, by the end of Conono's set half+ of the audience were on their feet and dancing in the aisles. Kid you not! Great evening for music.
This is a yearly affair and as 3D mentioned, check out the program when you first hear about it so that you won't be disappointed with: Sorry, Sold Out.
RESTAURANT REVIEW: ROASTERZ (Albert Cuypstraat 210)
3D signed up for both GROUPON and SOCIAL DEAL, two Internet companies which offer discounts on a wide variety of things including restaurant meals. I finally tried out one that was listed with both services. The "deal" said that I could get a 27 euro meal for 12 euro.
It turned out that the restaurant, ROASTERZ, has only been open for five months. It is the dream of a young couple; I stepped on kid's building blocks when I walked into the place. Two kids, neither older than 7 or 8 were entertaining themselves. The other thing that got my immediate attention was the ambiance...Or, perhaps more accurately, the lack of it. I would describe it as flea market chic. Two tables were communal and there were a few for two persons and stool-seating at the window, overlooking the market street. A bright representational abstract/geometric expressionist painting covered one wall (executed by the female member of the team) and, on the wall opposite, several hundred geometric abstract tiles. There is even a old and, stylistically speaking, badly outdated brocade sofa to sit on while you wait for a table. Nothing is pretentious. I liked it! Oh, forgot to mention, the room was filled with the aroma of roasting chicken and the spices of the Caribbean.
But, hey, it is all about food! I no longer remember how many courses were promised but I got much more than I had anticipated. I was served two appetizers. One was charred chicken with sate sauce. The chicken was nicely cooked on the outside and perfectly cooked on the inside. There was more than enough sate sauce and I cleaned the plate with two slices of bread. The other offer was HOTROTWRAP, two portions. The wraps were filled with fillet of chicken, guacamole, iceberg lettus, creme freche and cheese covered with a sweet chili sauce. Very good.
Then came the entrees...Yes, plural. Two dishes of chicken, a salad, fried brown rice (nasi) and french fries. Let's start with the salad. It was made from rocket and spinach leaves plus cherry tomatoes and grated cheese. A simple oil and vinegar dressing covered it. Tasty! (5.75 euro)
One chicken dish, ChopStickBitesMeal, was made from the wings of the bird. Again, charred to perfection on the outside and moist and tender on the inside. There were six pieces. It was covered, again, with their sweet chili sauce. (7.50 euro) (N.B. On the menu it says that you have a choice of rice or fries with each dish. I recommend the nasi; forget the patats.)
The other chicken dish, SkatteBoutMeal, was from the thigh section. It was covered with a "spicy"---but not that spicy---sauce made from tamarind and identified as a "peanut sauce" but liquid and not thick like sate. Didn't matter. It was delicious and, again, the chicken was perfectly cooked. (7.50 euro)
I was asked, at the conclusion of this part of the meal, if I had had enough? Too much! was my answer. The next thing that was said, "But you haven't had dessert!" Huh? More? Bring it on.
I had a choice between and an "ice cream soda" and banana pancakes. Big decision time. But as a teenager I had been a "soda jerk" making ice cream concoctions at a drug store. I take my ice cream soda making seriously. So I opted for the pancakes. Actually, they are more like "poffferjes" and the same size. There was a sweet buttery sauce covering them and sesame seeds sprinkle over all. Great!
As to the negatives...Only one beer is offered, Heineken in the 25ml bottle at 2.75 euro. Also wines though there is no list. Strangely enough, there is no salt and pepper at the tables, but is available on request. The menu is only in Dutch, but the waitress was more than helpful in English. The service? No complaints.
The rest of the menu...Basically, it is something like a tapas bar; they serve small portions and all are from chicken, but, again, you have the either rice or fries---the latter, a disappointment---that come with each. There is a "snack" menu with such offerings as "ChessyChickensSandwich" (4.95 euro).
Overall, good quality at friendly prices.
https://bit.ly/2MpeAgR, (020) 72.22.355
WHAT YOU HAVE MISSED:
DJ Simpson (UK) is at PS (Madurastraat 72) for his second appearance. His technique is fitting with his style: Simple. Essentially, he takes composite board or plywood and with a router craves out an irregular grove thus exposing the layers of the composite. What you get is a depth perception that is both real and an illusion at the same time. In this exhibition, he has added another element with aluminium plates at about five cm. in diameter. He complements the disc with circles or irregular rectangles. The result is sometimes elegant. (25x21 cm ColorCore on Birch plywood @ 2,250 euro; 55x45 cm powder-coated aluminium @ 5,500 euro) Until 23rd June. www.psprojectspace.nl
De Witte Voet (Kerkstraat 135) is showing the ceramic work of Wilma Bosland. Bosland does what at first looks like free form ceramic pieces. But after you study a few works you will begin to see a "shirt" or at least the upper part of what looks like a shirt; there is one work that resembles a horse's yoke. In the back of the gallery your thought of "shirts" is justified. There are four works with heads sticking from the "collars." Some examples have a touch of color or some other embellishment. (555, 750, 1,200 and 1,500 euro) Until 29th June. www.galeriedewittevoet.nl
VOUS ICI ETES (NDSM-Werf, Ms. van Riemsdijkweg 41) is hanging a summer group show but it is a short one and will close on the 23rd of June. So, hurry! Pieter Bijwaard has provided the concept and title for the show: Neue Stille. It was curated by several people. And the results are exhilarating! The work ranges from minimalism to conceptualism, to "intellectualism" and all is exemplified with techniques such as drawing, collage, mixed-media, etc. A few examples: Henk van Gerner's work could not be more simple. A mix of collage and a few scrawly pencil lines. (650 - 875)....Sanne Bruggink does geometric/abstraction in matte and high gloss with irregular linear designs, shapes and dimensions. (1,800 euro)...Clary Stolter is a painter of minimalistic canvases in pink and off-white. (1,050 to 1,450 euro)...Pim Leeksma creates geometric/abstract paintings filled with symbols and with a linear tilt. (750 to 950 euro)...Karoly Keseru "paints' with acrylic on canvas. Well, paintings doesn't really describe the technique. One canvas is covered with several hundred dots. Another is a grid which measures 168 squares by 168 squares = 28,234 squares. Most are with color dots. The effort boggles the mind! Until 23rd June. https://bit.ly/2vwApoe
...And directly next door and through the wall is the Nieuw Dakota which is sponsoring New Saint Petersburg. All 15 artist are from that city and all were born during the 80s. That means that their formative years were the 90s and they grew up in the New Russia. And their work reflects that. Gone is USSR poster-style illustrated paintings. All the work can be described as representational but each with its own individualistic style. Expect to see: paintings, prints, drawings plus seven photographers shooting in color and b/w. A good selection of paintings and no two styles are derivative.
GRIMM (Frans Halsstraat 26) is exhibiting Alex Dorday (UK) with work that is visually different. There is high degree of abstraction and an array of colors. He works both on canvas and a synthetic plaster-like material called Jesomite. This material allows him to give shape to his composition in real-time, you might say. There is a little bit of David Salle's style to his work as well. Here's a nice touch...Autumn in Amsterdam, you can purchased a wall of leaves in the colors of fall. (28x18x7 cm Jesomite + toner @ 3,000 euro; 118x86 cm oil + toner + Jesomite @ 4,750 euro; 270x120 cm oil on canvas @ 12,000 euro; A wall of leaves, dimensions vary, transfer + toner, Ed 3 @ 4,000 euro) Until 22nd June. www.grimmgallery.com
Expect a family affair at Smith*Visser Galerie (Noorderdwarsstraat 7) with a mother and daughter showing their respected work. Kathelijne Roosen, the daughter, hangs 32 b/w photographs. Everyone pictures the same woman; and the woman is her. However, these are not meant to be self portraits. She says she used herself as a model and tries to transfer herself into another persona. And indeed each person is sometimes radically different in some way. She is heavy on contrast and used light very nicely. The scenes range from exterior to interior and to the intimate. (13x18 cm photo b/w @ 195 euro; 30x40 cm photo, b/w @ 385 euro; 50x70 cm photo b/w @ 750 euro. All prices include the frame)...Yolanda, the mother, does ceramics. Her influence appears to be the sea in some cases. In other examples there is a strong organic feel in the imagery. She included jewelry also made from ceramics. (ceramic work @ 150 to 700 euro; jewelry @ 47.50 euro). Until 15th June. https://bit.ly/2OVDLt0
Arno Mertins shows at "APPELS gallery" (Brouwersgracht 151) with his colorful conceptual expressionistic paintings which have organic overtones in its forms. He uses both oil and acrylic paint effectively. There is neither an over abundance of one color in a work nor a redundant use of any one color in all the work. Each piece stands by itself. Each have their own integrity. (18x24 cm @ 300 euro; 30x30 cm @ 450 euro; 30x90 cm @ 600 euro; 170x140 cm @ 2,500 euro) Until 30th June. www.appelsgallery.nl
Kahman Gallery (Lindengracht 35) hangs it first exhibition which features the photographic work of two people: Carla van de Petelaar and Mona Kuhn. The former, specializes in nudes and flowers. No matter the subject matter, she uses a black background to better define the imagery. As to the nudes, they often go beyond simple nudity in that they define form of the body in subtle and unique ways. She includes two state-of-the-art "animated photographs," which feature nudes in which the participant explores her body. (77x54 cm Archival Pigment Print, Ed. 8 @ 3,000euro; 95x75 cm C-print, Ed 8 @ 4,500 euro; 24x16 cm Galatee film on DVD, Ed 10 @ 5,000 euro)...Mona Kuhn style has similarities in style and subject matter but is different. She also does nudes but sometimes it is an out-of-focus water scene. And the subject matter ranges from that to a young boy at a swimming hole or a subtle view of a rainy day. She works in color with quiet overtones. (38x38 cm Chromogenic Print, Ed 25 @ 2,950 euro; 76x76 cm Digital Archival Print @ 4,750 euro; 127x127 cm Digital Archival Print, Ed 3 @ 12,000 euro. Two books with an original photo as also available: Van de Petelaar @ 825 euro; Kuhn @ 975 euro) Until 29th June. www.kahmanngallery.com
Melanie Bosboom shows at "C&H art space" (2e Kostverlorenkade 50) with something very different...if not sometimes spectacularly so. She is a photographer/artist. The "art" part begins before she picks up the camera. What gets your attention is the"costuming," and scene constructions. Add to that her natural wit which is satirical and with tongue-in-cheek. 3D would attempt to explain some of the imagery but I think I would fail miserably. You really gotta see it! (45x60 cm Photo print, Ed 5 @ 1,000 euro; 100x150 cm photograph, Ed 5 @ 2,500 euro) Until 18th May. www.ch-artspace.com
Galerie Wies Willemsen (Ruysdaelkade 25) exhibits "boxed books" by Imre van Buuren. She is a graphic designer, by trad,e and in her free time adapts the skills and knowledge of graphics to making "books" which is her first love. Each book itself is as different as any one book is different from the one next to it on a library shelf. So is the paper. Several types of paper are used in each individual copy including fine stationary to wall paper. And many pages have collage addition; it might be a simple ribbon tied nicely or a feather. You are also encouraged to use it for your own purposes as a diary or to write a collection of poem. The boxes themselves are beautifully constructed---and all in white---and each has added features. It is a labor intensive fabrication and at 250 euro, a really good buy...On the walls are difficult to classify works by Alwan Jalal (Iraq). The pieces are not really abstract nor are they truly expressionistic. They are what they are! Some canvases have much "color" without being "colorful." That is, the color is subtle and seem to be more of a nuance to the forms. Gold leaf is used effectively in some works as well as collage additions which vary from rusted bottle caps to a one meter long brass staff inlaid with turquoise decoration. (120x90 cm @ 1,400 euro). Until 30th June. www.wieswillemsen.nl
3D loves surprises! And I got one at Gallery BRANDT (Prinsengracht 799) with their exhibition for Yigal Ozeri(USofA/Israel). What you will see is a collection of portraits of attractive ladies. And you get three views of each. Ozeri arranges the imagery as a triptych. He captures mood and emotion; and the posing is intentional though in a natural way or to fit the environment. And the technique that achieves all this? Well, that's the surprise! I had made a tour of the room and had jotted notes; then I looked at the price list and saw that I was NOT looking at photographs as I had assumed, but hyper-realistic oil paintings. My jaw dropped and I walked over to one painting and got my nose up to it and, yes, I could see a few ridges of paint from the brush stokes. It is not in the same detail as say Richard Estes, but more what I would describe as "impressionistic hyper-realism." Nor was I the only one fooled. I asked three people what they thought of the "photographs" and everyone gave me an opinion based on the fact that they were looking at photos. When I told them they were paintings I got a "Huh?" as a reply. Cool! (23x114 cm. triptych, oil on paper on wood @ 28,500 to 32,500 euro) Until 30th June. www.galeriebrandt.com
FLATLAND (Lijnbaansgracht 314) has renovated the space and shows it off with a group show of eight artists. And it is a good and well balanced exhibition with photography, painting, ceramic and ceramic work. The latter is represented by objects that are a bit curious. The artist, Caroline Smit (Bel/NL) has been inspired by ghosts, skeletons, goats and rabbits. But don't let that dissuade you since the results are more often than not captivating. Two paintings standout and are by Jeroen Allert. They are representational landscapes, however the imagery of the landscape occupies less than 10% of the composition. Cool! No price list. Until __?__
...And next door at LUMEN TRAVO (Lijnbaansgracht 314) is the work of Yvonne Droeg Wendel showing what 3D would describe as conceptual sculpture objects. There are 17 examples of cardboard objects on display. Each one is truly of an unique design and shape. Simple and elegant! This is her latest work. In the gallery's office there is earlier work which consists of a series of "cushions" for want of a better term. They are free form objects of irregular shapes. A few small pieces have a magnet inside and iron filings cling to the outer surface of the balls. (35 euro to 11,000 euro, what a price range) THREE RED DOTS. Until 15th July. www.lumentravo.nl
...And a few more doors down you are at AKINCI (Lijnbaansgracht 318) and the showing of the work by Juul Hondius(NL) who does photography. A photo montage stands out and the individual photos are mounted on folded paper and features the same man from young to middle age; and in b/w and color. Hondius focuses on people and generally in their natural environment which is the Middle East. His compositions and framing are unusual. (256x256 cm photo montage on folded paper Ed. 25 @ 1,500 euro; 35x45 cm C-print on dibond Ed 5 @ 2,500 euro; 110x147 cm C-print on dibond Ed 5 @ 5,500 euro) Until 13th July. www.akinci.nl
Gered Mankowitz has been following the popular music scene since the 60s. If you are into the rock stars beginning then and into the 90s don't miss this show at Vassie (Langestraat 49). The photos range from formal portraits to LP covers. In you are a Stones' fan---and 3D is---You will be over joyed to see eight examples of which two were done for the LP cover. Also, you will see from Marianne Faithful to Kim Wilde and Kate Bush. Most works are in beautiful b/w and a few are in color. This is an all British affair, almost. The exceptions, Jimi Hendrix and Suzi Quatro. (40x50 cm silver gelatin print Ed 25 @ 1,950 euro; 50x60 cm C-print on Fuji paper Ed 5 @ 2,150 euro). Until __?__
Galerie RA (Nes 120) is a new jewelry gallery and that means that you never know what to expect; and, also, often you can forget gold, platinum, diamonds and rubies. You learn that it doesn't take precious stones and metals to make for a stunning piece of jewelry. Rika Fekete proves this in spades. Her materials consist of steel, leather, wood, paper rope, aluminium and the closest she gets to "precious metal" is silver. And the works are best described as conceptual new jewelry. How does this grab you? Rings that are squares; brooches that look like abstraction/geometric constructions and necklaces that are, hmmm, hard to describe.
She shares the stage with Lam de Wolfe who is back at RA for her annual appearance. She shows a large wall object (450x120 cm) that is composed from 500+ balled-up sheets of paper with typography which is almost subliminal. There is also a handmade book available. It has 20 pages and each one contains a collage made from fabric. Nice! (Wall object @ 3,000 euro; Book,Ed 20, @ 145 euro) Until __?__ www.galerie-ra.nl
Kirsty Mitchell is exhibiting at MORPHO (nee: Morren Gallery, Prinsengracht 572) with photographs that transports her models into what is sometimes a fantasy-land or there are dressed in preposterous costumes and sometimes surrounded by butterflies or attired in headgear reminiscent of the type worn by Queen Elizabeth I of England. Her subjects have a haunting look and often come across with an enigmatic expression. Good color and at other times almost b/w with sepia overtones. Each piece is available in three sizes, at three individual prices and the edition are 5 or 7....Showing with her Brooke Shaden who is also doing photography with women as the subject. Two things standout: Color and water. In some works the model is submerged in water. As to color, some photos feature beautiful hues of blue or assertive red. Another relevant factor is that we don't see the model's face. They are anonymous.(2,300 to 3,600 euro, photo on dibond; no edition number listed) Until21st July. www.morphogallery.nl
Galerie W. van Leeuwen (Hazenstraat 27) presents Jessica Backhaus (Germany) who employees several stylistic photographic techniques. That's unusual. But, even more so, is her choice of subject matter and its resulting imagery. She photographs old metal with a patina of rust and scars; or a simple scene where in the foreground we see leaves in sharp focus in in the background a chair which is out-of-focus. There is a simple still life of three glass bottles shot from above and we clearly see the shadow that is cast for each of them. (31x21 cm. C-print, Ed 5 @ 1,950 euro; 41x44 cm. C-print, Ed 5 @ 2,950 euro; 122x81 cm. C-print, Ed 5 @ 5,800 euro) Unmtil22nd June. www.woutervanleeuwen.com
Jay Miriam (USofA) shows at ORNIS A. GALLLERY (Hazenstraat 11) with figurative expressionistic paintings. But as to the "figurative" aspect you often perceive it more than see it. There is a strong COBRA influence, De Kooning and Picasso. You see these nuances because of her strong and assertive colors. Certainly not work for the tame at heart. (20x46 cm. oil on linen @ 900 euro; 152x122 cm. oil on canvas @ 3,800 euro) Until 30th June www.ornisagallery.com
At Galerie Alex Daniels (Weteringschans 79) is John Copeland who also a figurative expressionistic painter and the figuration is accessible; you can define the subjects. The works ranges in color from minimal---one work is a study in whites and off-whites---to the very colorful. And if this isn't to your liking, don't despair. He also hangs pencil drawings which are skillful realized. He employs the engravers hatching technique effectively...And there is more. Copeland has taken original PLAYBOY covers, from the late 60s, and embellished them by painting over parts of the cover. (41x34 cm. acrylic on magazine paper @ 2,250 euro; 58x76 cm. graphite and oil on paper @ 3,500 euro; 137x320 cm. acrylic on canvas @ 18,500 euro) Until 16th July. www.reflexamsterdam.com
Marc Lagrange is a master when it comes to photographing the nude. And he accomplishes it two ways: simply and elaborately. In most work on display, it is the latter. We see a lady or ladies in an 17th or 18th century room of what could be a palace. Other photos are pure portrait work and sometimes with embellishments like a b/w photo with a nude wearing a top hat with a city street in the background or the woman sitting at a dinner table wearing a see-through blouse or another---and with humor---of a woman who has poked both her head and her hands through the holes made in the paper. She has a 30s-40s hair-do and is painting her nails. Some works have a fetish theme. A good range of work and all based on the nude. The artist says, "I am always looking for a woman's sensual essence" and 3D would add, more often than not his quested is achieved. N.B. The show is at Galerie Pien Rademakers' new location: KNSM-laan 291. (The pricing reflects how many have been sold. As an example, Black Orchid, has sold out its edition of seven and the gallery now offers the "artist proof" at 43,150 euro. 57x75 cm inclusive floating box frame, Ed 7 @ 6,0885 euro; 140x110 cm. inclusive frame, Ed. 7 @ 9,610 euro) Until 4th July. www.galeriepienrademakers.nl
At Galerie Roger Katwijk (Lange Leidsedwarstraat 198) is the work of two artist. Huibertje Kant does small sculpture work that is large in monumental essence. Most of his work could have inspired Richard Roger's iconic structure that earned the sobriquet "the big pickle;" a skyscraper built in London a few years back. But that's just the shape of the pieces. Kant foes further. His work is in the shape of a circle or an elongated oval and they are like looking at skyscrapers with no walls, you can see all the way through each "floor" level to the piece's core. Simple, elementary and elegant! (Aluminium, Ed 5 @ 4,750 euro; aluminium, Ed 5 @ 8,900 euro)...The other artist is Jae Ko who has an unusual but very simple style and technique. He takes rolled light-weight paper and covers it with colored ink generally in a rusted red color which metamorphoses into an ochre-yellow shade. He then shapes the paper into a simple geometric design. (37x31x14 cm. rolled paper & colored ink @5,000; 110x81x11 cm. rolled paper & colored ink @ 23,000 euro) Until 13th July. www.galerierogerkatwijk.nl
Another new gallery has ventured unto the Amsterdam art scene: GALLERY/SHOP 10+10 (Quellijnstraat 92). This is their second opening and the artists is Lotte Klaver whose work 3D has been following for over five years. She makes figurative b/w ink and wash drawings but they are almost conceptual. To understand that you must see them. The imagery is of kids, portraits, animals and body forms. What makes her work dynamic is the sense of movement you get from looking at a body form that is in motion. She is able to achieve the illusion with only a few lines and/or splashes of ink. Nice! (Small drawings @ 130 euro; large drawings @ 180 euro) FOUR RED DOTS at opening. Until 30th June....Now, about the space which is divided in half with one half for the gallery and the other more or less a gift shop for handcrafted work like jewelry, hats, small bags, scarfs and other gift items. www.lotteklaver.nl
...And another new gallery...Angle Gallery Amsterdam (Weteringschans 207) features a group show curated by Arno van der Mark who also includes his own efforts. Well, it is a long list: Isa Genzken (Ger), Eleni Kamma (Greece), Christain Marclay (USofA), Joke Robaard (NL), Q.S. Sera-Fijn (NL), Joelle Tuerlinck (Bel) and Heimo Zobernig(Austria). Several works can be described as outstanding. Go and see if you can pick out the outstanding work. It will be worth your effort. The styles and techniques range from photography, to drawing, to sculpture/object and pastels. No price list. Until 22nd June. www.anglegallery.nl
...And still one more new gallery...Galerie Jordaan (Lindengracht 86) hangs the photogrpahic work of Anthony Cassidy (IRE/NL) who does color photos with an emphasis on portraits. The color work couldn't be better. His choice of subject matter is eclectic within the perimeters of "portraits." You will see and American Indian chief blowing a bubble from his chew of bubblegum. Then there is the Japanese bride having just exited from the ceremony with a radiant smile and it is deeply emotional. His photos reflect his travels around the world. There are four framed pieces that feature boarding passes from the many trips. The countries represented read like a Cook's tour: Japan, USofA, Ireland, India, Canada, Tibet, Thailand and Israel. He captures the natives in their ethnic splendor. (Average price range 600 to 750; 5 @ 2,250 euro) Until 7th July. https://bit.ly/2OguYBW
Arnout van Albada is at Galerie Mokum (Oudezijds Voorburgwal 334) with realistic paintings. His subject matter is a diverse variety of still lifes: A bowl of bon-bons, a box of raspberries, puddings in a variety of colors----one is a yellow hue and sits on a plate and against a wall painted pink. The colors sometimes stand out, as in the latter case, and at other time they are subtle or in black and brown shades. (oil or egg tempera & oil, all on panel from 3,4004,800 euro) SIX RED DOTS at opening. www.galeriemokum.com
At ART A CASA (Kerkstract 411) it is a return for two artist to the gallery. Nicole Ladrak does mixed media work that is really mixed media. It is because each piece comprises many elements including material. the subject matter ranges from lounging women to table settings. She paints, then adds collage and she covers it all with netting. More of than not, the work is very---and pleasingly---colorful. There is something for every one's pocket book, too. Small works measuring 10x10 cm. with imagery of fish, birds and lemons are only 65 euro; others are priced at: 450, 700 and 950 euro....Andrea Letterie does mixed media on panel. She like flowers and cups are also a favorite subject matter. The flower bouquets are pictured in water pitchers and very colorful. There is also a series of unusual still lifes. Unusual because of the way they are presented and in some cases that means the perspective from which we view it. As an example, the composition has the illusion that the viewer is staring down and at an angle at a green table with five pitchers and a few other items. It makes the piece! (150, 900 and 1,500 euro) FOUR RED DOTS total. Until 8th July. www.artacasa.nl
Miriam Londono (Columbia) has what 3D sees as an unique technique and you can see it at Galerie 59 (Van Eeghenstraat 59). She does "paper sculptured" pieces. First she pulps paper, adds pigmentation and glue and puts the mix into a plastic squeeze bottle and "draws" a figure image. It is like a simple line drawing. Some works are all typographic works. Using hard pins she suspends the work about two or three cm. from the wall. The light is reflected like a shadow and you have an added sense of depth. In one piece there are four sections and each hang a different distances from the wall. You feel you are in the presence of a small crowd of people. Nice!. (80x81 cm @ 850 euro; 215x77 cm @ 1,450 euro; 250x70 cm @ 3,850 euro) Until 21st July https://bit.ly/2QpDkIQ
WALLS has changed into a "concept store"...And they are popping up everywhere. Why not! What ever pays the overhead. The current show includes eight artists and here is short overview of what to expect. Erosie is an abstract-conceptualist who does b/w drawings and collages which are very colorful or subtly so. The imagery is organic in that it seems to be in motion. (20x30 cm. pen on paper @ 250 euro; 50x70 cm acrylic latex on paper @ 450 euro)...Sarah Vanbelle does geometric figurative-like iconic silkscreens presented as a 12 piece grouping. (41x30 cm all @ 800 euro)...Daan Botiek makes wooden wall objects with geometric designs. He also hangs three quirky drawings; simple, conceptual and revitting. (@ 300 euro). Until __?__ https://bit.ly/2LRAexM
When you are hot...you are hot! And Jan van der Ploeg is sizzling!!! He has been doing simple geometric/abstracts as wall paintings for what seems like forever...And he's not even that old. What is amazing is that when you consider his minimalism and its simplicity you wonder how is has avoided becoming banal, repetitive or even boring. Each new design is just that: New. And the colors...Not many, in fact. Generally not more than one color balanced against white. In this current exhibition at Gallery Gerard Hofland (Bilderdijkstraat 165) some works reflect back on Op-Art of the 60s. Good show! (64.5x38 cm Digital Print, Ed 25 @ 250 euro; 40x30 cm acrylic on canvas @ 2,968 euro; 45.5x40 cm acrylic on canvas @ 3,625 euro; 60x48 cm acrylic on canvas @ 4,579 euro) FOUR RED DOTS and TWO GREEN DOTS @ opening. Until 23rd July. www.GerhardHofland.com
...And there is more sizzle, from Van der Ploeg, at NASA (Arie Biemondstraat 105), a 10 minute walk from Hofland. While the imagery is the same, the scale is a dichotomy from that of the gallery. You will his wall paintings and it is a very big overview of this segment of his oeuvre. And in this show it is a personification of the "wall concept" because he does all four walls as an interrelated work. The first gallery is rather laid back with a soft olive green and brown abstraction. The second room, is in shocking colors of red, blue and white against a light olive green background. The next gallery is a b/w pattern; and the two walls are a mirror image of their opposite side. The next gallery---and along the canal---is tranquil. Sky blue and white which is a geometric design encompassing each wall. Nice! And there is more. Lots more. He has even done the lobby at the entrance. Until 11th August. https://bit.ly/2Mmneg0
If Van der Ploeg has been around for a while then Woody van Amen was there at the beginning. He visited New York in 1961 and returned to Holland to become the country's first Pop School artist. But he did it his way and he is still doing it his way. At Gallery Ron Mandos (Prinsengract 282) you will see that his attention has turned towards Asia. Often you see it because of the addition of calligraphy. Other works have a collage addition like an Oriental sandal in multicolor and design. Then there are a couple with an added collage which depicts an Oriental spirit. In the back gallery there are smaller works and for the most part they are collages. He also hangs four fabrics pieces; and in a darkened room there is a cubic piece made of several squares and each covered with LED lighting which is in constant color change. And then there is neon...3D loves neon. (40 cm high porcelain sculpture @ 3,000 euro; 31x24 cm w/c, drawing, collage @ 2,500 euro; 57x72 cm collage on Chinese paper @ 3,500 euro; 150x50x80 cm neon object @ 50,000 euro) Until 13th July. www.ronmandos.nl
New jewelry design can be seen at Galerie Rob Koudijs (Elandsgracht 12). Sungho Cho is a conceptual jewelry designer. Basically abstract with some parts figurative. The materials are unusual for jewelry making and with a variety of materials used. And perhaps in one piece there are ten different elements whether it is a ring or a brooch. (875 to 2,150 euro) FIVE RED DOTS at opening...Showing, too, is Estela Saez with geometric abstract designs realized in elaborate configurations. A few have metal "arms" intertwined and snaking their way through the design. She uses silver, rose quartz and smoking aquamarine. (Necklaces, brooches and object @ 400 to 4,300 euro). Until 22nd June. www.galerierobkoudijs.nl
The Algemeen Handelsbladgebouw (NZ Voorburgwal 240) "becomes a cultural function. The Times: From Newsrooms to Art Palace, a joint effort of the Amsterdam Museum and Donna Wolf," The first exhibition shows a selection of historical and artwork from the 80 plus works done by artist who live and work in the building. What you will see are artifacts connected to the building and conceptual interpretations that reflect both its history and the functions of the structure. There are original newspaper editions that were printed within the complex as well as photography illustrating aspects of its history. One piece stands out both because of its size and conceptualism. It is an object//sculpture piece measuring 2.5x5x2.5 meters. Is is made from folded newspaper and designed in the shape of a press that is spewing them out. It is the work of Maze de Boer. Nothing is for sale. Until 17th August. Open Wed to Sat from 12-19:00. No website listed.
Pere Llobera (Spanish) is having his third solo exhibition at Galerie Fons Welters (Bloemstraat 140). He is a representational expressionist. Some works lean more one way than the other. The imagery is easily defined but the simplicity of the technique is where the expressionism comes through. However, he deviates from the technique when it comes to colors: Not many. Blacks, grays and off-whites predominate. And just when you think he takes the easy way out---his technique---you cast your eyes on San Pau de Tebas. It pictures a hermit receiving the gift of food from a bird. Look at the detail of each very closely because it is beautifully done. As to imagery you can expect a little of everything from the banal--a dilapidated automobile---to a boy holding a football above his head. (30x30 cm oil on canvas @ 2,400 euro; 65x54 cm oil on canvas @ 4,800 euro; 81x100 cm oil on canvas @ 7,250 euro)...In the font part of the gallery, PLAYSTATION, is the work of three artist: Lucas Hoffman (Ger) shows a 29 minute video; and Yael Assaf (Isr) has one at 19.36 min...Asli Cauusoglu (Turkey) exhibits an "artist book, 52 pages, Turkish and English map, mixed media on paper, 102x168 cm." The latter is hanging on the wall and it is a simple line drawing. Until 13th July. www.fonswelters.nl
This is the year that was...The Amsterdam Art Season of 2012-2013 has come to an end. It was both successful and a big flop. The success was much good art and some great art. The flop? Lack of those beautiful RED DOTS that mean SOLD! Well, we have September and it's just around the corner...A fresh start...And possibly, just possibly, we will feel the need to buy, Buy and BUY more...Art, that is.