Thursday’s visit to KunstRAI in Amsterdam was quite the experience. I have been completely oversaturated with Exposure to Art since Art 2013 in Utrecht - Here’s a post that breaks down what I enjoyed from that show. I decided for KunstRAI that I would only photo what really stood out for me and try to do so a quickly as possible. Even though I got sucked into a couple interesting conversations, I did the show in just under two hours.Okay, so Husband Dave says I have been a bit edgier lately - true - and I saw it exhibited on the way out the door, where I was confronted by two blue envelopes from the Gemeente asking for money for my US Income - thanks for taxing me twice, Nederlands, that’s just great. I tried to put my fuming attitude aside as I entered KunstRAI, but this introduction was a bit much for my eyes:
As I continued on, I stumbled into my first incredibly challenging art of the day; the work of Les Deux Garçons. I really cannot put words to how disturbing this work was, in all it’s porcelain cuteness. Amazingly finely crafted, yes, but the hypocrite inside me was disgusted. Sure, I am willing slaughter animals for food and clothing, but imortalize their beauty in a whimsical way, hideous. Yes, I have intense conflict, but, like a train wreck, I could not look away. Now you must see it too:
It is undeniable that this work is stimulating and I am happy for the conflict, it makes me think - so thank you Garçons - but part of me wonders, if they had to kill the animals themselves, would they still do it? It’s one of the things I asked myself when I questioned eating meat. Could I kill a pig and gut it myself? Yes, yes I could. I can visualize the entire process and it feels fine, just the same as using the skin of an animal for a pair of high heels. These are important questions to ask as a consumer, yes? So, having NO answers to whether I like this work or not, I moved on.
Shaking the dust off my disturbed mind I turned 180 degrees away from dead animals and discovered Bob Smit Gallery, hailing from Rotterdam. I enjoyed the raw quality of his space, and as it was convienently located next to the cantina, I could see how great it would be to sit down a spell and suck it in. If you did, here’s what you’d see.
Bob Smit himself, was indeed lounging in the cantina when he saw me wrapping my head around his unmarked presentation. He and I spent some time talking about the artists presented - since they weren’t tagged. When I left I thought for sure I would find these works online - nope - but their other work I did find I was quite solid - I particularly liked the work from Birgit Verwer. Who’s recovery and incorporation of her Catholic background inspire works of questionable religious intent - and frankly I found them quite funny. The black crucified piece on the right is her’s - yes, it’s a lamp, and let me tell you, the light it shines is harsh and cleansing - quite fitting.
The best part about talking to Mr. Smit was his youth, he is just so beautiful. He’s young and has refreshing take on art - the new lack of subsides from the Gemeente for artists will get rid of the dust. Having studied art himself, he has found more joy in representing the work of others and does so in a large way. This year, his gallery will be creating an installation for the the North Sea Jazz Festival. Judging by his candid representation of his artists, it’s not to be missed.
On a more personal note, I could feel my whole body become tingly as we discussed my work. I worried I might pass out when he said send me some images of your work. I do not know how to exhibit in “The Netherlands” - I have no idea what to do other than to title my next exhibition before it even exists, step one. Thanks for inspiring, Mr. Smit, it’s lovely.
Moving right along - here’s more art:
Beads, ceramic, glass is a great combination from Esther Jiskoot.
The work of Tilman - small and unassuming on it’s little wall. A captivating piece and Tilman’s archetectural slant does go bigger - his website has a number of installation sculptures that carry the same feel of this one but on a much larger scale.
And more dead things from Idiots.
A complete environment from Ruthi Helbitz Cohen. It was beautiful to walk through and be absorbed by an artists work. A stunning textural environment.
After all that dear reader, you’ll have to wait to read about Boobs in the next installment…. There’s just too much content, once again. If you can, go to KunstRAI - it’s stimulating as all get out - DO IT.