Last week i visited the recently opened Museum Voorlinden for the first time to write a review about the present Ellsworth Kelly exhibition for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the review (in Dutch).
My first visit to Voorlinden was a slightly sentimental one as i used to come here in the end of the 1970s as an academy student to make landscape sketches.
The villa was designed by English architect R.J. Johnston and is a 1912 copy of the then owner’s English wife’s home in England.
Of course you can tell immediately from the large chimneys that it’s English.
Today the villa is a state monument and it contains the museum’s restaurant.
The museum itself, designed by Dutch architect Dirk Jan Postel, was built from 2013 onwards.
It serves as a kind of temple (complete with columns!) to show part of the art treasures of collector Joop van Caldenborgh.
The new building itself isn’t very big but is very economical in its design to
have enough space for showing some big monumental installations that
aim to be iconic for the museum,
for showing part of the collection in changing formations and
to have special exhibitions.
The use of daylight through the roof is a constant feature in the exhibitions,
while corridors give wonderful views of the park around the museum.
In such a place it is no wonder aesthetics plays the lead in the collection and exhibitions, as is often the case in big private collections.
Buzzing society with its problems and controversies is absent from the collection.
As such the museum serves as a refuge for modern and postmodern, maybe even post-postmodern aesthetics.
The present Ellsworth Kelly show is well composed by Rudi Fuchs. It leaves the viewer with Kelly’s works in full glory and as Kelly died last year it is also a kind of retrospective. Here are some details of the exhibition.
But of course it is better to go and take a look yourself.
[Click on the pictures to enlarge]
Content of all pictures courtesy the artists and Museum Voorlinden