Un sentiment de comme si; Gemak/Vrije Academie, The Hague

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A lousy, rainy day in The Hague. A good time to see the present show at Gemak, Un sentiment de comme si. It‘s this week only as it is linked to the graduation show at the Royal Academy of Art (KABK), which will be opened on Friday July 11th.

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It’s made by students of the Master Artistic Research. That may sound horrible, but it is quite interesting.

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You are being watched… (actually, i was wearing green trousers).

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Artistic research usually means that the thinking is part of the art and that the result, whether visible or not, is only part of that.

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And usually it also means language plays an important role. For instance in this work by Quenton Miller you hear a woman’s voice speaking while at the same time you can read subtitles. But in the subtitles words are changed subtly or less subtly.

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In another act of clarification-by-mystification Hannah Dawn Henderson, as an anglophone, tries to speak Dutch, while the video shows subtitles in English.

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While at the time i was there taking pictures, she did a performance of Cecilia Bengtsson. (By the way, it’s peculiar i always feel these days that either i’m part of the performance or i’m not. These feelings are exchangeable).

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Annabel Kanaar strikes a more lyrical note with work about death and parting, while

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Sarah Pape García’s impressive project Exercise for Weightlessness occupies a large part of both the Gemak and of your own thinking.

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Sharelly Emanuelson shows her intriguing movie Doh Mix Meh Up, quoting E. Glissant: “(…) We all (people from the Caribbean – BP) feel it, we express it in all kinds of hidden and twisted ways, or we fiercely deny it.” Alas, it was too dark to make a proper picture.

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And back to language with Julia Reist, whose project is carried out with booklets, monitors, performance etc.

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The graduates found inspiration from the works of other artists like Abonnenc, Robert Ashley, Beckett and Dora Garcia, which are exhibited as well.

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And if your are reading YOU AND I HAVE BECOME WE, just turn around and see, if it’s raining, how the bikes reflect in the wet pavement, not

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because it’s important, but because it’s there.

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Click on the pictures to enlarge

Bertus Pieters

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