The Dutch version of British television show ‘Antiques Roadshow’ called ‘Tussen Kunst en Kitsch’ (‘Between Art and Kitsch’), has kicked off their new season with the discovery of an early work by Dutch artist Karel Appel made around 1948.
The artwork features the relief of a child figure made out of a door and was bought on the Waterlooplein flea market in Amsterdam probably from Appel himself. The owner paid 5 guilders (2,30 euro) for it and is worth somewhere between 20,000 and 25,000 euro. At that time Appel was quite broke and used materials from around the house to create his works.
In 2012 we wrote about a warehouse with 400 works by Appel found in the UK.
(Links and photo: deredactie.be, web.avrotros.nl)
Tags: Amsterdam, Karel Appel, Waterlooplein
Dutch professional football player and coach Bob ‘Bobby’ Haarms is being honoured with a tram stop in the district of IJburg in Amsterdam. However, Amsterdam’s public transport company GVB couldn’t be arsed to check the spelling of his name, as an ‘r’ is missing.
The GVB has six more days to modify the sign before the Haarms family officially drives through a banner on a tram to unveil the tram stop. Haarmslaan is spelt properly online so far. Amusingly enough, the tweet is from a police officer and it’s not clear if she noticed the mistake.
Tags: Amsterdam, football, IJburg, tram
The bus I normally take to get around town currently takes a detour due to construction, which means getting off at a bus stop near the above cool bit of Amsterdam West street art.
Entitled ‘Morgenster’ (‘Morning Star’) created by visual artist Arjen Lancel in 1995, the artwork is located at the gates of the cleaning and maintenance department of the local district. The television and toilet are made of terrazzo, the bin bag of cast aluminium, and the broken wheelbarrow, shovel and wood of bronze. The street light ties the whole thing together because when you walk by the artwork for the first time, you think it’s trash simply because it’s next to a street light. As well, walking from the bus stop you’ll see it from behind, which makes you wonder if it’s not trash. And of course, at night, ‘Morning Star’ gets its own light.
(Link and photo: buitenbeeldinbeeld)
Tags: Amsterdam, street art
The Netherlands is known for its coffeeshops (the ones that sell soft drugs), but it also has a lot of places that just serve coffee, called coffee houses or if you want to be cool, ‘coffee tents’, the equivalent of ‘stand’ or ‘joint’, as in place, not the soft drugs.
Amsterdam photographer Gijs van den Berg has a collection of pictures he took of coffee houses with actual film, which he then developed with the coffee of the places in question using the caffenol process.
The project is called ‘Gewoon Koffie’ (‘Just Coffee’) and currently includes 11 coffee houses, highlighting the interior, owners and patrons. “Caffenol gives the prints a natural yellow and brown tint, and the different coffees produce an ever-so-slightly different look for each of the prints,” Van den Berg explains.
For anyone in Amsterdam, you can see Van den Berg’s photographs at the Werkplaats of the Volkshotel in Amsterdam for free through 28 August.
(Link: petapixel.com, photo: Gijs van den Berg)
Tags: Amsterdam, coffee
Japanese artist Taturo Atzu, internationally renowned for his temporary art projects that touch upon monuments, statues and architecture, has transformed the historic weather vane and small roof turret of the Oude Kerk (Old Church) in Amsterdam by constructing a roof terrace enabling people to gaze at the city below.
Entitled ‘The Garden Which is Nearest to God’, Atzu’s first public project in the Netherlands, the artwork provides a unique chance to see Amsterdam, which otherwise would not be possible. The roof terrace is open until September 6.
However, not everyone is happy with having ‘artwork’ attached to this national monument, least of all the Friends of the Oude Kerk Foundation who have it out for the church’s director. Well-known Dutch author Geert Mak said that the church should not become the plaything of some art elite, while composer Elmer Schönberger said the church provided one of the ‘oldest silence of the Netherlands’, which this artwork, although temporary, has taken away.
(Links: oudekerk.nl, www.parool.nl, Photo: www.parool.nl, Tip: John)
Tags: Amsterdam, Oude Kerk
A metro line that’s eight years overdue and counting, ugly late twentieth century buildings already being demolished and questionable clothing brands: downtown Amsterdam is too crowded with tourists and the prices are going up, pushing the locals out.
Urban and architectural geographer Mark Minkjan compares Haussmann’s clean up of Paris’ in the nineteenth to what is happening in Amsterdam today:
The city wants to get rid of its famous Red Light District, which lies just a few metres behind the Red Carpet [Damrak, as you step out of Central Station]; the number of coffee and tourist shops is being confined. In virtually all urban situations, temporary creative projects are parachuted-in to imperfect places to attract new audiences and new investments. It signifies the direction in which Amsterdam is going: it’s on its way to becoming an incredibly liveable, comfortable, clean and pretty city; but of course, the cost is its soul.
Grab a beverage and give the link below a read.
(Link: www.failedarchitecture.com, Photo by Flickr user Taver, some rights reserved)
Tags: Amsterdam, Paris
The Amsterdam chapter of the Awesome Foundation that awards people money every month to realize ‘awesome initiatives that solve problems or bring joy to the world’ has given art collective Indebt Studios 1000 euro to plant marijuana seeds around town.
The group bought some 40 kilos of cannabis seeds and planted them in all kinds of green spaces in Amsterdam, from flower pots to community gardens, including the ones at the Rijksmuseum.
Why plant 40 kilos of weed? It’s an artistic statement against the increased stamping up of Amsterdam’s wild side, like trying to shut down prostitutes, coffee shops and all the things that make Amsterdam what it is in the first place. “Yoghurt bars are not going to make up for the loss, and that’s sad,” one of the guys said. Big cities like New York and London are losing or have lost their edge, and yes it would be sad if Amsterdam lost its grit, too.
Tags: Amsterdam, cannabis, plants, Rijksmuseum, weed
On 10 July the Dutch Vegetarians’ Union will attempt a world record: getting 1900 people to eat together at a very long table and score the longest vegetarian dinner table record. Last year the world record was set at 1750, and the year before that Mechelen, Belgium had the honours with 1000 participants.
The big banquet will be held at the Museumplein in Amsterdam, a big park surrounded by the Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum and the Van Gogh Museum where large events often take place. Some 20,000 volunteers will be dishing out kilos and kilos of vegetables and tortilla wraps for the dinner party and everybody who wants to eat is invited. The union wants to point out that ‘meat production is the second major polluter of the environment after heavy industry’ and that ‘food can taste great without meat’.
Key words? Free food.
(Link: www.parool.nl, Photo: veggieunwrapped.com)
Tags: Amsterdam, vegetarianism, vegetarians
Startup company MX3D that does 3D printing of metals and resin in mid-air has plans to print a steel bridge in Amsterdam without any additional support structures. Using ‘multi-axis’ industrial robots and an advanced welding machine, MX3D can print with steel, stainless steel, aluminium, bronze and copper in mid-air. In September the city of Amsterdam will announce where the bridge will be built.
“The robots will begin printing the bridge on one side of the canal and will create rail supports as they go. They will be able to gradually slide forward on supports, literally creating the bridge upon which they are crossing the canal.” MX3D’s bridge will be made of a new steel composite designed by the University of Delft.
MX3D will be collaborating with many parties on this project, including Amsterdam’s Joris Laarman Lab with their supportless, magical 3D printing of metal.
(Link: phys.org, Photo of freeform metal lines from dezeen.com)
Tags: 3D printing, Amsterdam, bridge, Joris Laarman
On of my first visits to Amsterdam as a child we went to Waterloo Square, and what an impression it left on me.
You could buy everything at the daily flea market. Pins and suits and sabres and boat lamps, it was like walking around in a Tintin story. It was bigger then, before the city of Amsterdam decided to ban the market in 1977 for 11 years so that it could build its monstrously ugly city hall there.
Waterloo Square (Dutch: Waterlooplein) was where the merchants from the nearby Jewish quarter were told to ply their trade from 1885 onwards. Last Saturday I visited the festivities surrounding the 130th anniversary. A lot of the stalls these days offer the same knickknacks you can get from every generic tourist shop in Amsterdam, from wooden tulips to gable shaped fridge magnets, from T-shirts with marijuana leaf print to colourful chullos. You can still find something special there if you know where to look, but politics and the likes of Lonely Planet seem to have done a number on the flea market I remember.
Update 15-6: I added 9 more photos to our Flickr page.
Tags: Amsterdam, antiques, holocaust, Waterlooplein