maandag 16 november 2009

De Hondenmepper, CBK 's-Hertogenbosch

Te Dog-smacker. Stan Wannet succeeds in surprising you with his work again and again. He is surely becoming renown as the artist, who reanimate dead animals with modern techniques. In this art installation again he reanimates dead animals in his special way. Dogs this time! As closed pets to man, the encounter is maybe even more horrific. Inspired by the novel of the known Dutch writer W.F. Hermans: "De God Denkbaar, Denkbaar De God" Stan Wannet depicts the absurdistic and violent scenes from this novel and he translated them in this probably even more alienated kinesthetic art installation, in which he reanimates these dogs to 'life-action' heroes.
The work of Stan Wannet is often quite confronting. Departing of the remains of hares, guinypigs and this time, dogs. Taking the skin and the structure of these animals and filling the reconstructions of their bodies with a lot of electro-technics and robot-technics. In doing so bringing them back to 'live' and let them performe remarkable and unexpected actions. His work does not ease your comfort zones, it goes more or less easely beyond them, presenting you quite an other picture as the images we normaly see about pets like dogs.

In June 2008 Wannet had already attracted our attention, with his contrubutions at the Verbeke Foundation in Kemzeke (Belgium), where he spend six months as an artist in residence. He made a few eye catching contributions to the exhibition "Vision in motion - Motion in vision". Remember the remarkable pair of hares, one writing mathematical formulas and the other working behind a type writer. They were quite intriguing as you can see.

After he had concluded his study at the Art School in 's-Hertogenbosch, Stan Wannet did a degree at the Poly Technics in Eindhoven. Specializing in how to beter master the art of building technical devises and using electro-technics and computerised robot-technics in a more integrated but poetic manner in his art. So if your are in the neighborhood, don't hesitate to go and see his new art installation four yourself. Not in Eindhoven or in Kemzeke this time, but in Stan's own home town 's-Hertogenbosch, at the CBK.

CBK 's-Hertogenbosch, Hekellaan 2, 5211 LX 's-Hertogenbosch. Still on show until 3 January 2010.

The two little video-movies: 1. The Dog-smacker and 2. The pair of extra ordinary Hares.

zaterdag 11 juli 2009

STARTDUST Oude Warande Tilburg

Okay, its summer in Brabant! So if you are sure that's nice weather, just go for a nice walk in the park! This summer Fundament Foundation has realized something catchy in the Oude Warande, Tilburg. They complemented the park with a new paviljon designed by Callum Morton. Is it an artwork of just a teahouse? A place where you can lumber in the shade or snap a white wine on the terras?
From the outside, it only casts reflections as it first appears. But this is only one of the surprises you find in the park this summer. To celebrate the realization of the pavilion, Chris Driessen has curated a exhibition around pavilion of Callum Morton. And as you can see in the following pictures I took, the theme of ‘casting reflections’ is quite close the subject of a lot of the sculptures. Some artists show quite other kind of work, but that’s for you yourself to explore.
I just like to zoom in a bit on the reflections partly casted by the works displayed. In a time of economic downfall, the pavilion of Callum Morton is in my views almost a paraphrase on the tall mirroring banking buildings, we more over see in the citycenters of our larger cities. Over here in the middle of this classic green park it is almost an antagonism, if you connects it’s appearance to that of those glass façade buildings we all know so well as the institutionalized image of power.
But then entering in closer, the surprice will even be bigger…
It’s likely that it is a timemachine in the same time. Mirrors as a disguise. A stubborn bloc, you almost cannot see clear, because it is absorbed by its surroundings, mirroring everything back to you, and then it cloakes something completely different? Already curious enough, Go check and see it for yourself. (No, this next picture is the cabin at the entrance).
And still an other big contrast there is, with this little pavilion a bit further down the lane, where you find the weightless transparent glass building of Dan Graham.
It’s only a few weeks passed, that I spoke with him, on the memorial lecture in homage to the Nordic architect he so admires, Sverre Fehn. On the 5th of June in Venice, Sverre Fehn was the celebrated designer, the architect of the Nordic pavilion in the Giardini Park. Also a quite extraordinary geometric structure, with a few trees enclose in the building.

Something which associates quite easily with the contribution made here in the Warande, by Ugo Rondinone, Pagan Void. Rondinone made especially for the Stardust exhibition a new edition of this earlier work. Amongst a number of trees, he planted geometrically a rectangle of fluorescent yellow painted pebbles. A reference to the ‘sun’? Hm, now the sun reflects even brighter patches in the fluorescent yellow pebble bed.
But still there are other nice things to explore. Statues that generate reflections or try to dissolve themselves in their surroundings. A mirroring surface is a miraculous thing, Jeff Koons already discovered. Small things like the makeover of a parkbench, a thing you easely miss... if you didn't saw the little glimmers in the back of the perforated bench. In the Oude Warande we see small things to forget, like the makeover park bench by Hendrik-Jan Hunneman, or a mysterious boat floating in the pond, by Maria Roosen or the tree tall hide and seek statues of José Pedro Croft in which complete trees disvolves: "I'm not there!"

All kinds of reflections, to puzzle the mind, in the same time as when you are looking at these refreshing examples of contemporary art. Then I haven’t pointed out to you, that there are also a few fairytale figures on higher ground in the park, like Fox and Otter made by Rona Pondick.And there are still others to see. To start this puzzling walk in the park, you almost think instantly that everybody got lost, by calls of the sound sculpure made by Job Koelewijn. No, it’s not the fairytale park of the Efteling your in. That's a bit further down the road near Waalwijk, in Kaatsheuvel. No it’s all to see in De Oude Warande, close to the University Campus in Tilburg. And probably twice as nice. Go and see it for yourself, it is open until 27th of September 2009, but it's surely as nice to visit, during the summer when the sun shines and the temperature under the trees in the forest is cool but not cold.
letterpress: 1. Grotto, Callum Morton; 2. Entree-shop; 3,4,5. Seurat, no Monet, Dan Graham; 6. Pagan Void, Ugo Rondinone; 7. Ik ben je vergeten, Hendrik-Jan Hunneman, 8. Blackberry/Braamboot, Maria Roosen; 9, 10. zt José Pedro Croft; 11, Otter, Rona Pondick.

zondag 21 juni 2009

Paleiskwartier 's Hertogenbosch: Stressed Spaces

In this last week’s running up to the summer, you find mostly all kind of events and contemporary art exhibitions in Brabant which are made site specific. This give them a little something extra, beyond the general exhibition shows in galleries and museums which also open their summer exhibitions around this time of the year. Sometimes they just give you that little nice surprise, where you hoped for entering an exhibition of contemporary art. Stressed Spaces opened earlier this month and just runs only until 19th of July. Stressed Spaces succeeds in giving you just this little extra, surprisingly well and this not only because the exhibition is organized in this somewhat strange location but surely also because of the vigor of the art which is on show here.
I know that more often, car parks can be and are used for quite a lot of other activities, then putting your car out of site for a while. This spot is close to the local City Museum for Contemporary Art the SM’s, where you will find the entrance to this strange ‘yellow’ intruder on the -2 sub ground level of this car park in the Paleiskwartier.
These yellow walls hides the temporarily building, which cuts through the centre of this low sub ground level and stresses out along for 175 meters. In this ‘yellow block’ the hibernation rooms are made to display a selection of the works of 25 artists. Each artist is placed in his or her own ‘cabin’ tailor-made for the occasion and fitted to the purpose of the specific visual art on display. This special ‘exhibition hall’ is designed by Krijn de Koning to give room to this year’s initiative of KW14, organized by Marjan Teeuwen.
Marjan Teeuwen, artist herself, explores each two years the possibilities of staging a site specific exhibition in ‘s Hertogenbosch. Empowered by themes she engaged with in her own work she sets out to find a location that fits, the means and selects the artist to participate. This time she invited 25, more or less known contemporary artists, working in different visual disciplines as there are: painters, sculptors, mixed media artists, and video & animation artists.
Her this year’s motive to invite just these artists she explains, is that they make art for its own purpose. A motivation which needs to be addressed, because nowadays art more and more is seen as to be an instrument to serve other goals. Goals which conflict with arts its own solemn identity. Art in the use with a purpose to make it a tool or a means, to target something else. In a way of what she calls “the miss use of art”. The autonomous identity of art is endangered by this development so that’s why “Stressed Spaces” is a call to arms.
More and more, she sees this happening everywhere around her. Art in use to reach out to meet the other goals of policymakers. Other goals for sure, as what art itself had in mind and where artists itself thought art is mend to be for. For its own sake!
Again, to justify any money or any attention is given to art, nowadays all kind of instrumental powers are contributed to art. Art as an instrument to educate the public’s morality, to endorse social development, to bind social integration, to revitalize old housing districts. This all to underlines art has ‘other’ necessary qualities, which will advocate and motivate why we should use and/or can use art and put public money in it. By now, when policymakers can’t think of anything else to realize their goals, they call artists and art in for the quick fix. Any goal can easily be reached by the introduction of these miraculous powers of art. So we don’t see art anymore as the only left toy for the rich, but as a mechanism to produce wealth and social development, or simply as a tool to bridge nasty contradiction in architecture or anything that unexpectedly went wrong in the first place.
Marjan Teeuwen stages, as we artists and art lovers don’t pay attention to this threat, art might dissolve in this instrumental use of art, as we know of in applied arts like; design, architecture, media and fashion or any other applied social sciences which think the use of these qualities of art, might come in quite handy.
That’s why Stressed Space can be seen as a comment on this especially. Just enjoy… its art!

In Stressed Spaces you can see, the photographs of stuffed spaces, by Marjan Teeuwen, the paintings of for example; Charlotte Schleiffert and Aaron van Erp. Statues of Paul de Reus, collage prints of Eva Fiori Kovacovsky and works of lots of other artists. One of the artists, who intrigued me the most with her work, is the video artist Saskia Olde Wolbers. Deadline (2007) is a slowly and silently, mirroring movie, with mind blowing images. Images where as the camera is hovering around slowly rotating objects in her studio, the voiceover of a woman, tells an as astonishing as puzzling story. A story of two brothers of which one is her father. The two brothers having ‘naturally’ the same father -her grandfather- but two different mothers. Still they are twins, born on the same moment. The story plays in a place fare away, in Gambia. Sometimes the words connect just like that, to the images in the video, what brings you in the flow of the story. The images in this movie let themselves compare to the narrative of the story, as ruins do, to the history of the past. The story is told as if it just happened, not being a strange fairytale. In this gentile voice and movement; the past, future and present are nicely stirred up. Imagination and fantasy are activated as logic and deduction in the same time. Fiction and non-fiction starts to unfold and connect lines that hooked up into your brain, questioning the truth about the story told, but also about your own experiences. And that is precisely where art itself is mend for, leaving you with a few more questions behind, as the few where you came in with.

Works on show are from: Maartje Korstanje, Charlotte Schleiffert, Voebe de Gruyter, Jasmijn Visser, Rob Voerman, Andrei Roiter, Karen Sagsyan, John Bock, Jasper de Beijer, Florette Dijkstra, Saskia Olde Wolbers, Robbie Cornelissen, Martha Colburn, Paul de Reus, Natasja Kensmil, Ina van Zyl, Rik Meijers, Manon Bovenkerk, Krijn de Koning, Rinke Nijburg, Eva-Fiore Kovacovsky, Aaron van Erp, Barend van Hoek, Jesper Just and Marjan Teeuwen.
Each with a room of their own in “Stressed Spaces”.
letterpress: (1) Marjan Teeuwen, (2,3,4)Krijn de Koning, (5) Charlotte Schleiffert, (6)Eva Fiore Kovacovsky, (7) Paul de Reus , (8) Aaron van Erp, (9,10) 2x still Saskia Olde Wolbers

Stressed Spaces, Car Park Paleiskwartier 's-Hertogenbosch, still on show untill 19 July 2009.

dinsdag 24 maart 2009


In the ‘Audax Textiel Museum Tilburg’ is until June 14th, 2009, staged a modest but revealing exhibition on the state of the art of knitting: Knitted Worlds, A Call to Arms. This exhibition by Suzan Rüssler, curator of the same museum marks the threshold of a revaluation of this handicraft, which is in the last decades associated with a rather dull and old fashioned craft, only carried out as pastime by a few not the most fashioned old ladies. As if it had lost all its fashionable vigor what it had had earlier in the seventies of the bygone century.
Knitting had lost its appealing attraction and didn’t feed the imagination of artists or designers any more. Only in social fieldwork and certain feministic groups sometimes, knitting still played a role as a symbol of alliance and solidarity.
In this exhibition, not everything touches the right string, but it marks a shift. As a means of expression, linking in with its rich history and connotations, knitting has it all. It was only recent, when I was at the symposium The Curators in Witte De With (Rotterdam), where I helped out Ann Demeester, director of De Appel (Amsterdam), to cut the thread of her knitting-work, so she could change color and relaxed continue her needle-work while listening to the interview with Seth Siegelaub.So is it or isn’t it a women’s thing? Of course it has a rich history in the arts and crafts movement of the sixties and seventies, where it was eagerly used just because of its connected with social politics and feminism. But it still puts up artistic questions when mixed with actual topics like conservation and sustainability again, which are in the centre of our todays attention. Artists always have had a keen eye for these kind of lines, which like a ‘file rouge’ runs through time. It is a fact that there are even knitting interventions in urban public spaces, like fore instance in last year’s ZXZW festival in Tilburg. Knitting as an act of intervention! I am happily awaiting the New Gorilla Girls, who will pick-up this act of resistance to the bright and shiny male driven art world of the shiny naked steels of Jeff Koons and bling bling armored pieces by Damien Hirsts. These beautiful balaclava’s (Avata's) would come in quite handy and change any act of violence in a smooth and artistic intervention of feminine power. This modest exhibition in Tilburg, reveals this new potent possibility of the gentle power and concentrated attention of this barely by artist and designers forgotten craft: Knitting-it into a New World. We can use some change..., can't we? But don't let it come a Brave New World, like it already is far to much. And what is in the drawers of the table up above, is for you, yourself to discover. It explains the downfall of the 'plastic surgery' after too much of ER and VR of our photo shopped realities and tellies. A man again, this doctor 'Mad-lock'.

letterpress: works shown on the exhibition by Jimini Hignett; Gift for Dr. Matlock and Chrystl Rijkeboer; Avatar Martine/Roël/Anouska.

woensdag 18 maart 2009



The artist Rachel Koolen (1979, Rotterdam) continues her ongoing artistic research of the history of the Dutch Social Security System appearance and imagery, in building a large scale installation throughout the exhibition space of Artis Den Bosch. She succeeded in transforming this space in collaboration with the German architect and colleague Andreas Müller.

In the exhibition space of Artis Den Bosch 'Technocratic Openness, Free Aggression', Rachel Koolen creates an special intervention which uses photography, video and display strategies to enroll and endorse a personal comment on the bureaucratic phenomenon’s of the Dutch social service institution. The Institution which is mend to give support to people on the raffle’s of Dutch Society. Being an artist, depending on income support, Koolen has also endured to participate and play part in this nowadays bureaucracy service system.

The artist focuses on the “Centrum voor Werk en Inkomen” as the central location and the focused subject in her work. In “Centrum voor Werk en Inkomen” are to day the so called ‘labour squares’; the located offices where the registration desks of unemployed workers is integrated with the execution of the supervision services, as well as that of the support projects and the regular contact meetings with clients are held. Services to secure rules and arrangements which lead the unemployed workers to new jobs.

These places, with their present structures which they derived from nowadays trade and service industries, adopted a fancy business-like character. High lighting, transparent and mirrored glass walls, open service desk aria’s and picture rich marketing and publicity campaigns’ supports the clients vision of immediate admission to these support services.

Koolen as an artist, examined and investigated the development and history of how the Dutch Social Security service system presented itself through the sixties, seventies and eighties and exposes the sources on which they based their present policies.

In an enclosed network of connections she exposes these layers, deconstructs and shows how these changes in presentation evokes a changes in the appearance of the bureaucracy itself, still forcing up even higher levels of control on their clients in a smooth and bright surrounding. In this transformation in which bureaucracy gave itself a pimped outlook, not everything looks likes what it is. In an even subtle artistic play Rachel Koolen brings to surface that what gently threatens to submerge.

Artis Den Bosch is open to visitors Thursday till Sunday, 1 pm till 5 pm.
The exhibition Technocratic Openness, Free Aggression closes on 26th of April 2009. (Shown pictures are taken at the exhibition)

donderdag 26 februari 2009


Yes, from the first of March, Gust is going to write his blog in English. This is because the art scene is so international. Gust gets visitor from all over the place. It realy gets him! Don't miss a thing, opt in for the monthly newsletter.

vrijdag 20 februari 2009


Presenteert tot 14 juni 2009 François Morellet. Tja, Reinhold Würth, herr professor, doctor Würth, volgt een bijzonder inspirerende weg naar succes en 'schrijft' daar ook boeken over! Bij elke vestiging van zijn bedrijf bouwt hij enkele museale presentatie zalen, om kunst te tonen uit zijn collectie. Ook in het weekend als het bedrijf zelf 'dicht' is.
Volgens mij heeft Reinhold het helemaal begrepen. Wil je als bedrijf laten zien dat je staat voor kwaliteit en als topbedrijf in deze tijd presenteren, dan kun je niet anders dan je lieëren aan kunst en cultuur. Dat heeft Reinhold al vroeg begrepen en succesvol toegepast. Kunst en cultuur behoren inmiddels al zo vanzelfsprekend bij de Firma Würth, dat het overal deuren opent en tot op het hoogste niveau entree geeft. "Dat zouden meer mensen moeten doen!"
Juist in deze tijd, blijkt het belang van de door Reinhold gevolgde strategie. Daar heeft hij Richard Florida niet voor hoeven te lezen. Zijn kunstcollectie heeft naast een grootse omvang een forse, massieve waarde. Krediet bij de bank is geen enkel probleem en in elke regio waar hij een vestiging wil openen, weet men inmiddels dat men er een 'kunsthal' bij krijgt. Dat is de kracht van Reinholds idee!

"Dirk Scheringa in Spanbroek, Karlheinz Essl in KlosterNueburg, Reinhold Würth everywhere!"

Wij hier in Brabant profiteren dubbel. Zowel in Den Bosch als in Turnhout is een 'Kunstforum Würth'. Vanuit zijn grootse kunstcollectie, die het Zuid Duitse Künzelsau als thuisbasis heeft, worden tentoonstellingen samengesteld, die dan reizen langs de verschillende 'Kunstfora' door heel Europa.

Kijk, dit is François Morellet, de Franse 'Eminence Grisse' in de 'concrete kunst'. Geboren in 1926 en nog steeds 'very a life and kicking'. Vanaf de begin jaren vijftig van de vorige eeuw werkt Morellet systematische en geometrische aan een groots oeuvre, abstract concrete kunst. Zijn werk is gebaseerd op een door hemzelf ontwikkelt vormgevingsprincipe waarin overlapping, fragmentering, ordening en interferentie aan de basis staan van zijn beeldtaal. Vanuit een constructivistische oorsprong, ontwikkelt hij zich naar wat wij 'opt-art' zijn gaan noemen en manifesteert Morellet zich vanaf de jaren zestig met G.R.AV. (Groupe de Recherche d'Art Visuel) waar hij één van de oprichters van is. Hij werkt in een steeds breder spectrum aan materialen.

Bijna iedereen heeft wel eens een van zijn 'Sphères-trames' gezien, bollen opgebouwd uit rasters van roestvrij staal. Maar goed die bollen zijn misschien visueel verrassend, de 'core' van zijn werk vinden we terug in zijn recente schilderijen 'Striptyques' en verrassende neon-assemblages als 'Lunatique Neonly' uit begin deze eeuw. 'Rede en Ironie' is de titel van de tentoonstelling, die geheel in samenspraak met de oude meester is gekozen. Morellet brengt rede en ironie met een speels professionalisme samen. Doorwerken boven je 65-ste? Juist dan dit even gaan zien!

fotobijschriften: No. 1 Striptyque nr 1, 2005 (300cm x300cm). No. 2 François luimème, No. 3 Un Sphère-trames (1962) en Lunatique Neonly, 16 quarts de cercle nr 2, 2001 (295 x 200cm)
Voor meer informatie, kijk op

zondag 11 januari 2009

Naar welke tentoonstelling ben jij geweest...

Bezoekersaantallen 2008 kunstmusea in Brabant

Noord Brabantsmuseum, Den Bosch 127.000
Breda's Museum, Breda 81.700
Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven 80.000
De Pontmuseum, Tilburg 59.000
Graphic Design Museum, Breda 39.000*
Jan Cunen, Oss 32.900
Audax Textielmuseum, Tilburg 30.000*
SMS, Den Bosch 28.000

* gebroken jaar, na verbouwing in 2008

dinsdag 6 januari 2009

Oss, Museum Jan Cunen

Op dit moment worden er in het Museum Jan Cunen, twee totaal verschillend ogende kunstenaars gepresenteerd. Nog enkele dagen tot 11 januari kunnen we het werk zien van Han Schuil (1958, Voorschoten) met name een 'schilderij', alkalyt op aluminium, zonder titel, dat is geschilderd in drie groene en een licht gele vlak, die als kwadranten het vlak verdelen. Dit werk is eind 2006 verworven door het museum en vormt als zodanig de aanleiding voor de tentoonstelling 'Crashed and Gobsmacked'. Schuil noemt zich zelf een figuratie schilder maar de figuratie in zijn werk is meer en meer geabstraheerd tot beelden met een krachtige signaal werking als tekens, iconen van moderniteit.

De tweede kunstenaar is Ronald Ophuis (1968, woont en werkt in Amsterdam) met zijn zeer groot formaat schilderijen met confronterende onderwerpkeuze. Obsure voorstellingen die de donkere aspecten van onze samenleving uitbeelden; pijn, lijden, geweld, executie, verkrachting. Genoemd wordt dat Ophuis 'het kwaad' een gezicht wil geven?
Beide kunstenaars zeggen over hun werk, dat ze 'impact' proberen na te streven. Ik zou zeggen beoordeel zelf het werk van deze twee geheel verschilend werkende kunstenaars, reis eens af naar Oss en onderzoek wie de hardste of heftigste indruk op je maakt.

fotobijschrift: foto 1 Zonder titel 2000, Han Schuil, foto 2 Birkenau II 2003 Ronald Ophuis