Over grenzen, de menselijke maat (About frontiers, the human dimension), Arttrium, Home Office and Ministry of Justice, The Hague

Aftrap4 01

In the 4th edition of the Aftrap (Kick-off) series (with works by artists who recently graduated from the Royal Academy), the communal exhibition space Arttrium of the Home Office and the Ministry of Justice shows works by five artists. The Home Secretary says in his introduction in the exhibition guide that artists are trying to “connect”, which would be quite appropriate to the present Dutch presidency of the European Union. Well, anyway, the curators organized a show with very different artists under the banner Over grenzen, de menselijke maat (About frontiers, the human dimension).

Aftrap4 02 Janine Terlouw

The show opens with an installation with video Stay Connected by Janine Terlouw about the religious aspect of communication by smart phone.

Aftrap4 03 Janine Terlouw

The way to heaven seems to be easiest when “liking” a lot.

Aftrap4 04 Menno de Bruijn

More provocative is Menno de Bruijn’s presentation Money, Politics and Bananas. He shows the world around soccer which is much bigger than the game itself.

Aftrap4 05 Menno de Bruijn

Apart from the raucous fun it is a world full of politics, money, rudeness, solidarity, passion and cruelty.

Aftrap4 06 Menno de Bruijn

He also collected pictures from conflict areas in the Middle East with people wearing football shirts.

Aftrap4 07 Menno de Bruijn

Even in that way football is linked to politics.

Aftrap4 08 Pierfrancesco Gava

Pierfrancesco Gava shows two visual essays on the language of power with Pope Francis and President Obama as main protagonists.

Aftrap4 09 Pierfrancesco Gava

I just hope the civil servants working in the ministries have enough time to see and hear these videos during their lunch breaks.

Aftrap4 10 Inês da Costa

Inês da Costa’s presentation called In Between is a visually attractive documentary installation about having lived in different countries and feeling “in between”.

Aftrap4 11 Inês da Costa
Aftrap4 12 Inês da Costa

There are banners composed of the flags of these different countries, booklets and wooden chests full of the questions one may have about belonging while having moved from one country to another so many times.

Aftrap4 13 Elise Sothys

Elise Sothys’ work has been shown more often on this web log. Her last presentation was at the GEM, which was quite impressive. In this case the presentation of her work is quite modest, but it is appropriately the end feature of the show, giving the whole a more general meaning about man searching for truth and redemption, almost beyond communication but also, to an extent, connecting.

Aftrap4 14 Elise Sothys

The five artists are well chosen but presented in a problematic space. Starting with Terlouw and ending with Sothys gives the idea of a story, but one could argue about the way the other works are presented within the sequence of that story and the gallery space.

Aftrap4 15 Janine Terlouw
[Click on the pictures to enlarge]

Bertus Pieters