VISIBLY ABSENT - 2nd edition
17 Mei 2010
Press release Stedelijk Museum
Amsterdam, 7 May 2009
VISIBLY ABSENT - 2nd edition
● icons from the collection of the Stedelijk Museum by students from the Rietveld Academy and Sandberg Institute
● at unexpected locations in Amsterdam
Launch of 2nd edition: Wednesday 13 May, 4.30 p.m., around Art Amsterdam
Can a collection be rendered visible at a time when it is away and out of sight ...? This question is the point of departure for the Visibly Absent project, organised by the Stedelijk Museum in collaboration with the Rietveld Academy and the Sandberg Institute. Following a successful first edition in the heart of Amsterdam, students are now giving icons from the Stedelijk's modern art and design collection an unusual visible presence at unexpected locations in the vicinity of Art Amsterdam.
The young artists in this edition have made a few excursions into the city centre but otherwise concentrated on the area around the RAI congress centre.
Visitors coming to Art Amsterdam by train will encounter posters by Pinar Demirdag (Sandberg Institute) on display at the nearby Amsterdam RAI station. Focusing on Roy Lichtenstein's famous triptych As I Opened Fire, she openly asks Which one is original? After all, Lichtenstein based his work on images from comic strips. Demirdag leaves it to the viewer to answer her question.
The hoardings around the RAI show how Piet Mondrian occupies our daily lives. Annelou van Griensven (Sandberg Institute) draws inspiration from the appearance of Mondrian's abstract compositions on clocks, textiles, tableware and other ordinary domestic objects. The photographs of her finds endow the icons with a third life.
Two other projects enliven the grey surroundings of area P3 in the RAI's parking garage. Annelein Pompe (Rietveld Academy) has taken the classic reaction to Karel Appel's work "Any child can do that!" at face value and invited an eight-year-old to copy Appel's mural in the restaurant of the Stedelijk Museum. Her film of the exercise is shown in the parking garage.
Eva Coolen (Rietveld Academy) has based her project on a well-known work by Daan van Golden which shows his small daughter turning cartwheels in a museum. Coolen brings the action back to life in a film in which the child turns continuous cartwheels, referring the viewer to the cyclical nature of life.
The Stedelijk's Construction Cabin, currently touring the city, will occupy a site by the entrance to the RAI for the duration of Art Amsterdam. It is the place to see a contribution by Lauren Alexander and Ghalia Elsrakbi (Sandberg Institute) demonstrating that a viewer's relationship with a work of art changes when it is exhibited in a different place. For their 'Stedelijk in My House' project they invited secondary school children from the Fons Vitae Lyceum to take home poster-sized reproductions of works by Marlene Dumas (Barbie (With Pearl Necklace)), Rineke Dijkstra (Kolobrzeg), Theo van Doesburg (Counter-Composition V) and Roy Lichtenstein (As I Opened Fire). The children photographed the pictures in their new surroundings and Alexander and Elsrakbi used the results as the basis for the presentation projected in the Construction Cabin. See also: www.stedelijkindestad.nl/stedelijkinmijnhuis.
In the forthcoming third edition of Visibly Absent, Sjim Hendrix (Rietveld Academy) intends to reconstruct Daniel Spoerri's 1965 readymade Table du Restaurant de la City Galerie: a tabletop bearing the remains of a dinner consumed that year in Zurich's City Gallery. In this second edition he is offering a mysterious culinary foretaste... in the form of free ice cream with caramelised ants, served from an ice cream van parked between Amsterdam RAI station and Art Amsterdam.
An equally Dadaist line is taken by Willem Sjoerd van Vliet and Linde Keja (Rietveld Academy). Their chosen starting point is the poster that Theo van Doesburg produced (probably together with Kurt Schwitters) to publicise their triumphal Dadaist tour of Holland in 1922. During the third edition of Visibly Absent, they will organise a revival of the notorious Dada Soirée. As a prelude to that event, they have found an intriguing way to proclaim their intentions: I AmsterdaDA is unlikely to leave the public on the Congresplein unmoved.
Geneviève Kooijman (Sandberg Institute) has revived the mystery surrounding the work of Cindy Sherman by translating her photographs into poetic descriptions - to be found on large stickers in and around the RAI.
Finally, there are two projects that use posters displayed on illuminated billboards all over Amsterdam. In the case of Annaïk Lou Pitteloud (Sandberg Institute), they are reproductions of works by Nam June Paik, Barnett Newman and Roy Lichtenstein, as featured on postcards sold in the Stedelijk Museum shop. Pitteloud has used the descriptions on the cards to work out how a work of art acquires iconic status and turned her findings into black-and-white posters.
Judith van der Velden (Sandberg Institute) shows that a reproduction is often much further removed from the original than we are aware. By gathering together various reproductions of photographs by Rineke Dijkstra, Van der Velden reveals that the originals are open to multiple interpretations.
An on-going feature of Visibly Absent is Me at the Stedelijk: thanks to Isabel Lucena (Sandberg Institute), visitors can use a 'green screen' in the Construction Cabin to project images of themselves into one of the exhibition spaces in the old Stedelijk Museum. This makes it possible once again to stand face to face with favourite works by De Kooning, Kiefer, Warhol, Lichtenstein and Appel. The resulting photographs can be downloaded from www.stedelijkindestad.nl/meatthestedelijk.
● Every Saturday on VPRO radio 6, between 9 and 10 a.m.: Het Onzichtbare Museum
Wim Brands interviews students from the Language and Image Department of the Rietveld Academy about their contributions to Visibly Absent. The students will also supply autonomous acoustic works in which the artist behind the icon is presented in word and sound.
Visibly Absent is intended both to provide the general public with a reminder of (or introduction to) the Stedelijk's collection and to maintain the museum's relationship with the city's art education institutions in an inspirational way. The project curator is Marten Jongema of the Stedelijk Museum.
Visibly Absent is accompanied by a free programme booklet containing background information on the projects and details of the entire route. Copies are available from the Stedelijk's Construction Cabin, located by the entrance to Art Amsterdam (hall 8/Park foyer) and downloadable from www.stedelijkindestad.nl.
Visibly Absent is part of Stedelijk goes to Town, the umbrella event enabling the Stedelijk to project its nomadic presence in the city during its period of temporary homelessness. The third and final edition is scheduled for this autumn. News about Visibly Absent can be found on www.stedelijkindestad.nl.
The Stedelijk Museum is also represented by other projects at Art Amsterdam: the central exhibition in the art fair itself (Off the Record, by guest curator Hans Aarsman), The Construction Cabin outside the main entrance and a special project for young people during the art fair, entitled Young & Collecting.
Visibly Absent is sponsored by: Rietveld Academy, Language and Image Department Sandberg Institute, Design DepartmenT
With the kind cooperation of: Amsterdam Partners, Amsterdam RAI and Art Amsterdam.
Note to editors:
You are cordially invited to attend the launch on Wednesday 13 May at 4.30 p.m.
For reservations and further information, please contact: Press Office, Marie-José Raven, tel. 020 - 573 26 56, firstname.lastname@example.org.
à Press materials also available via www.stedelijkindestad.nl/Press.