Happy Like Yesterday_ , Nest, The Hague

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Nostalgia is only interesting, not if it recalls old times, but if it creates something new that tells us something about our own time. All artists taking part in Happy Like Yesterday_, presently at Nest, seem to be very well aware of that fact.

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The exhibition also shows us how quickly our daily technological life is changing. It takes only a few years to be outdated.

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Centrally staged in the show is a plastic copy of the bust of the Doryphoros with bronze coloured silly putty over it by Roman Štětina.

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It is surrounded by three video’s by the same artist showing the artistry and craft of obsoleteness,

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connecting it with Joep van Liefland’s old fashioned video library,

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full of equipment for video tapes.

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But there is more apart from this well composed ensemble. In another room Harold de Bree presents his rebuilt creature from the 1982 movie Tron.

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It stands as a gate in the room and offers a view to the centre of the show.

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That’s different with Yves Scherer’s three works in a darkened room.

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The works, well presented and intriguing as they are, are more hermetic for those who don’t follow the artist’s ideas immediately.

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Ingmar König’s works refer to the decrease of hard physical labour in present day society.

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Such physical labour is substituted by voluntary hard physical exertion.

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Though the exhibition shows some very interesting works and thoughts, there is also a sense of the five artists standing with their backs toward each other.

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The centrally presented works seem to be in some kind of dialogue with each other, but there is not a strong sense of one theme in the show. However, the works themselves are very interesting, so don’t hesitate to go and have a look.

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[Click on the pictures to enlarge]

Content of all pictures courtesy to the artists and Nest.

 

Bertus Pieters

Simon Senn, Trespassages; Nest, The Hague

Simon Senn 01

I visited Simon Senn’s show Trespassages at Nest to write a review for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the review in combination with the present shows in Pulchri and Maurits van de Laar gallery (in Dutch).

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Senn works with a mixture of performances, photography and video.

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The actors in the video’s may or may not have a more or less directed role. More or less, as being in front of a camera always changes a person. That is an inclusive aspect of Senn’s actions and videos.

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Senn is trying hard not to give a moral judgement on his subjects, but on the other hand he forces the viewer to review his/her own moral (or other) judgement.

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This works quite well in the photo project Salon Kennedy I-VI in which Senn asked a psychologist to write a psychological report based on photo’s of different individuals, or

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in Meadowlands Zone 1 where South Africans are asked to take part in a contest of who can give the most furious speech.

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On the other hand i don’t see much of a point in offhandedly asking questions as an outsider to people of an inward looking community like in Purlieus Tales. You get what you expect and the cliché becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

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Nevertheless, take your time and have a look yourself as it’s an interesting show and very well presented.

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[Click on the pictures to enlarge]

Content of pictures courtesy Simon Senn and Nest

 

Bertus Pieters

Might as Well; Nest, The Hague

Ronald Ophuis

Ronald Ophuis

Might as Well at Nest, is a group show with works by seven artists about power.

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

The exhibition is carefully composed and some well presented and intriguing works by major artists are on show, but in spite of that there isn’t much coherence on offer.

Jan Rothuizen

Jan Rothuizen

Indeed Might as Well does show different aspects of power, but the works don’t really communicate with each other.

L.A. Raeven

L.A. Raeven

They just might have been other works.

 Jan Rothuizen

Jan Rothuizen

MAW 06 Jan Rothuizen

For instance, where is the connection between a rape scene by Ronald Ophuis and a map of the Teniersplantsoen in The Hague by Jan Rothuizen, both brotherly on show almost next to each other?

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Köken Ergun

Köken Ergun

A better couple are Fernando Sánchez Castillo’s video of a mating dance of two water cannons and Köken Ergun’s video Tank Love, although the latter’s bluntness of the quasi-artistic amateurish camerawork gives more brilliance to Sánchez’ aesthetic work.

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Though aesthetics isn’t all.

Zachary Formwalt

Zachary Formwalt

Zachary Formwalt

Zachary Formwalt

An in itself very beautiful video by Zachary Formwalt of Berlage’s Stock Exchange in Amsterdam may reveal something about the power of walls to create a special world within the world, but doesn’t that apply to many big buildings?

Zachary Formwalt

Zachary Formwalt

Generally speaking, are there any aspects of power on show  you didn’t know about?

L.A. Raeven

L.A. Raeven

Julika Rudelius

Julika Rudelius

L.A. Raeven’s new work based on the Milgram Experiment isn’t really that revealing and neither is Julika Rudelius’ double video Rites of Passage.

L.A. Raeven

L.A. Raeven

Julika Rudelius

Julika Rudelius

Still, these works are interesting because of the body language (and face language) and the dehumanisation of human character in both works, and the blurring of real life and staged life is intriguing.

Zachary Formwalt

Zachary Formwalt

Köken Ergun

Köken Ergun

If the show would have consisted of these two works, either with or without works of a third artist (for instance Ophuis) it might have been a stronger and more thought provoking presentation. Now Raeven’s and Rudelius’ are just two works amongst a few others.

Jan Rothuizen

Jan Rothuizen

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Please go and take a look for yourself and have another idea.

L.A. Raeven

L.A. Raeven

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

Fernando Sánchez Castillo

[Click on the pictures to enlarge]

 

Bertus Pieters

I am closer to you than your very self; Nest, The Hague

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

 

Gijs Frieling

Gijs Frieling

Some time ago i visited I am closer to you than your very self at Nest to write a review for Villa La Repubblica (click here to read the review and see some more pictures; in Dutch) .

Chaim van Luit (back), Gijs Frieling (front)

Chaim van Luit (back), Gijs Frieling (front)

For someone, like me, who believes life is only there for its own sake and that its only meaning is to continue, it could be a hard nut to crack to appreciate art that has to do with other convictions.

Gijs Frieling

Gijs Frieling

On the other hand, other convictions may cause the same problems to their confessors and in the end it is all about what makes the art work.

Gijs Frieling

Gijs Frieling

Nest has invited Gijs Frieling who is a Christian, Chaim van Luit, who is not a believer but who has a Jewish background, and Hamid El Kanbouhi, who is a Muslim, to make an exhibition which expresses something about these different religious backgrounds and how these make their work tick.

Gijs Frieling

Gijs Frieling

Frieling shows a painted version of a mosaic he is making for Haarlem Cathedral.

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

 

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

 

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

 

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

 

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

Van Luit shows his more conceptualist works that not just deal with religion but also with World War II and the Third Reich.

Anne Rodermond (front), Hamid El Kanbouhi (back)

Anne Rodermond (front), Hamid El Kanbouhi (back)

 

Hamid El Kanbouhi

Hamid El Kanbouhi

 

Hamid El Kanbouhi

Hamid El Kanbouhi

El Kanbouhi, in Who has peed in my mind, in which he was assisted by René Baptist Huysmans (soundscapes) and Anne Rodermond (sculpture),

Hamid El Kanbouhi

Hamid El Kanbouhi

 

Hamid El Kanbouhi

Hamid El Kanbouhi

shows the state of mind that present developments in and around Islam cause.

Hamid El Kanbouhi

Hamid El Kanbouhi

It all results in an impressive exhibition.

Chaim van Luit

Chaim van Luit

[Click on the pictures to enlarge]

Bertus Pieters

Alchemy, at Nest gallery, The Hague

‘You might think this is the finest pearl
But it’s only cardboard balls
Seamed in glue
Overwhelming technique
Done through diligence
It’s all happening from the inside, you say?’

Captain Beefhaert, Best batch yet

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Alchemy is the title of the present show at Nest gallery. But it might as well have been called Transformation. However Alchemy stresses the more

Alchemy 02 Navid Nuur

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material aspect of the exhibition. As the central piece by Navid Nuur shows, the exhibition is balancing between the aesthetics of the visual and the aesthetics

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of the conceptual. In this heap of salt, iron filings are being kept together by magnets. The salt absorbs the moisture (including the breath of visitors) of its environment, causing the iron to rust.

Alchemy 05 Oscar Santillan

Alchemy 06 Oscar Santillan

In a video work by Oscar Santillan a drummer drums on the rhythm of the falling sweat of an exhausted dancer in a church. In a religious place body liquid transforms to sound.

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In another work he extracted the ink from one of the volumes of Humboldt’s book Kosmos, the ink shaped as a very small ball in front of the book. Well, as you can see

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there is a lot to explain about each work, like about this small, seemingly marbled work by Nuur, which is a piece of iron partly stained by rust, blood and anti-rust.

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As this is not an explanatory blog i urge you to go and see for yourself, e.g.

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this pile of wasp nest’s paper by Alistair Mackie or

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Alchemy 12 David Rickard

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this polygon by David Rickard. Rickard also

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Alchemy 15 David Rickard

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perforated this oxygen tank and melted the drilling rests over it. Of course

Alchemy 17 Lawrence Weiner

such an exhibition (or any exhibition for that matter) couldn’t do without a text work by Lawrence Weiner who makes clear in all his works that art

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can only exist in our heads. Sculpture is more than an action, an instruction or a wrought piece of stone or any other material. And what could water and dust create?

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Well, when you come to think of it….. why not

Alchemy 20 Navid Nuur

Alchemy 21 Navid Nuur

delve into some more works by Nuur? There is

Alchemy 22 Navid Nuur

Alchemy 23 Navid Nuur

one with vitamin D powder.

Alchemy 24 Myriam Holme

Myriam Holme’s work has a room of its own and is based on several contrasts and opposites. Whatever you think of it,

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Alchemy 26 Myriam Holme

whether it is a work of material aesthetics or more spiritual aesthetics, it works very well. That’s different

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in Frank Ammerlaan’s work. It shows the results of a chemical process, which creates a work of some disinterested beauty. It simply lacks the stimulus to evoke meaning,

Alchemy 28 Frank Ammerlaan

for the Earth and its processes don’t create meaning. People do. All together this is a well composed and inspiring exhibition, which i’d recommend to anyone.

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(Click on the pictures to enlarge)

Bertus Pieters