October 23, 2014
October 17, 2014
Daniel Kok makes artwork with custard, in Dutch known as ‘vla’, which comes in cartons like milk cartons. He’s going strong on instagram, showcasing Dutch and international portraits. He calls it ‘Vlaart’ (‘vla’ and ‘art’). Kok says his daughter asked him to make her something in 2011 and has been honing his custard art skills every since.
(Link and image: www.froot.nl)
October 11, 2014
Hengelo-based artist Dimitri Spijk made this skull out of toy soldiers.
Spijk doesn’t appear to have a website, but I found this photo on his Facebook account. The price of the work is 1,000 euro, although it’s unclear if it’s still for sale.
Check Spijk’s Timeline for other works, I already saw a painting (“for the aspiring Spijk collector” as the artist writes) for 50 euro and a birdseed helmet with the text “voer vogels, niet oorlog” (‘feed birds, don’t make war’—in Dutch it is a pun) for 75 euro.
October 9, 2014
Yesterday at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam Ernst van de Wetering, head of the Rembrandt Research Group, gave a sixth and final presentation of a sizable catalogue of Rembrandt’s works in which 70 ‘new’ paintings have been added.
Determining whether or not an artwork is the real deal is a science that either devalues or upgrades paintings, changing history in the process. Before saying it’s a Rembrandt or an artwork of one of his pupils or contemporaries, the paintings had to undergo the scrutiny of X-rays, infrared, checking the layers of paint, varnish, canvas, and anything else that would prove that it was authentic.
Rembrandt’s oeuvre now consists of 340 paintings, much to the delight of museums such as the Louvre in Paris and even the Rijksmuseum that now has more real Rembrandts on display. The painting in this posting, ‘Old Man with Beard’, was added to Rembrandt van Rijn’s portfolio in 2011.
Ernst van de Wetering’s catalogue is entitled ‘A Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings’, the definite guide for now until technology might make restorers and others reopen the case.
September 26, 2014
Nobody said you couldn’t run a marathon around a building. American actor Shia LaBeouf ran 144 times around Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum yesterday as part of an art performance called ‘Metamodernism’. Last night’s international metamodernism symposium at the Stedelijk also featured Birgitta Jónsdóttir, Icelandic politician and activist known for collaborating with Julian Assange on WikiLeaks. By the way, Jónsdóttir was played by Dutch actress Carice van Houten in the 2013 film The Fifth Estate about Assange.
A few weeks ago, LaBeouf began posting cryptic Nike Plus tweets in which his runs spelled out letters of a rapidly-forming word, which ended up being ‘metamarathon’, the name of the running art performance. LaBeouf is doing this in honour of the museum’s Metamodernism day, which its website defines as an “international symposium [that] seeks to draw a cognitive map of our present in order to grasp the changing contours of our everyday lives, towards a paradigmatic shift lived by a generation born in the 1980s and after.”
The video features people running along aside LaBeouf while holding a relay baton.
September 24, 2014
French freelance art director and illustrator David Troquier working in Amsterdam draws cartoons on small notepads which he then props up in amusing places in Amsterdam to build stories, something he calls “cartoon bombing”. He also recently started a cartoon blog called RandomDam, with bits and bobs about Amsterdam. His cartoons are funny and have a refreshing take on simple things.
Troquier came to Amsterdam after having worked in Paris for eight years. He wanted a change of scenery and chose for Amsterdam because of its creative reputation. When asked whether his expectations were met he says: “Yes, definitely, Amsterdam is a city alive, with really cool and inspiring people.”
September 18, 2014
Rotterdam-based Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, known for his giant yellow rubber ducks and huge plush toys around the world, has had his big bunny rabbit in Taiwan burnt by mistake.
Firefighters claim that the fire which torched the 24-metre-tall rabbit, created for the annual Taoyuan Land Art Festival, was ignited by welding sparks from workers disassembling festival structures nearby. Local authorities might seek compensation from contractors for the blaze.
Commissioned by the Taiwanese government, Hofman’s latest installation project had been hugely popular, with more than two million visitors to the festival paying a visit to the giant rubber mammal. The ‘moon rabbit’ is a symbol of altruism and love in the legend of the Chinese Mid-Autumn festival, which took place on September 8.
September 1, 2014
Schiermonnikoog is an island and the northernmost and least populated municipality of the Netherlands. Among its 942 inhabitants is watercolorist Stella van Acker who moved there decades ago from one of the southernmost places in the Netherlands, Valkenburg, and has remained there ever since.
Holly Moors calls her “an absolute master. Her watercolors and other paintings have by now reached the level of a William Turner”.
August 9, 2014
It was published in Dutch in 1692 by one A. Boogert:
He explains how to mix the colours and how to change their tone by adding “one, two or three portions of water”. To illustrate his point he fills each facing page with various shades of the colour in question [...]. To top it he made an index of all the colours he described, which in itself is a feast to look at.
The book is called ‘The Clear Bright Mirror of the Art of Painting’ (‘De Klaerlighte Spiegel der Verfkonst’) and is written in plain Dutch. Unfortunately I keep tripping over Mr Boogert’s handwriting, otherwise I might have treated you to a couple of paragraphs. Due to the nature of the work (three colour printing wasn’t available until the late 19th century), it is likely that the author produced only a single copy. And it’s very cool is that this copy survived.
Shown here are two opposite pages of the index (“blatwijser of regisster”).
July 15, 2014
Berlin artist Niklas Roy, who calls himself ‘an inventor of useless things’, was asked by the city of Groningen to design something for the Tschumi pavilion (designed by Swiss Bernard Tschumi in 1990) that sits on a roundabout.
The ‘Pneumatic Sponge Ball Accelerator’ is the name of the installation, which combines a gumball machine with foam-like balls, a lottery machine and a particle accelerator powered by a vacuum cleaner.
Niklas says his work was inspired by CERN laboratory’s work with particle accelerators, which he says you can’t see at all. “This is a particle accelerator for ordinary people,” he explains. Considering Tschumi is from the French speaking part of Switzerland, I wonder if Niklas made that connection on purpose.