Dear [Goswell Road]
I hope this message finds you well!
My name is Dieuwertje Hehewerth and together with Diego Diez I run an exhibition space in Amsterdam named Plet-. You can find a bit more about it here.
We have recently come to know of your space, and though I see you currently have no exhibitions on show, I will be in Paris in the coming weeks, from August 12th till August 26th, and I was wondering if it would be possible to meet you to ask some questions about [Goswell Road] itself?
With Plet- we are currently conducting a small research on project spaces and independently run initiatives, which has stemmed from our involvement in the Amsterdam community. This has expanded to Madrid last month and this summer we hope to contact a few spaces in Paris also. We are particularly curious about how context shapes independently run initiatives, and how these initiatives, in turn, may reflect the cities in which they live.
It would be great to hear from you!
Thanks and very best,
29 May 2018:
Thanks for your interest in my thesis and for letting me introduce my graduation project to you!
For the graduation show I am proposing to graduate as a spectator, a line of thought that has stemmed from my thesis, which explored spectatorship as an active practice.
For the duration of Rietveld’s Graduation Show, I will be practicing spectatorship as outlined in my thesis.
Consisting of observing artworks, collecting ephemera and taking notes, my practice of spectatorship at GRA Graduation Show will continue as usual. However, for this occasion, a selection of these notes and (collected) objects will display the process through a continually updated vitrine.
Throughout the exhibition I will be inviting people to join me. This will be a variety of people from fellow graduates, to people active in the field, to a family member, neighbour or somebody that has little contact with contemporary art on a day-to-day basis.
I would like to extend this invitation to you as we have been studying in the same academy for four years and yet I feel I have never really gotten to know your work. Partly out of curiosity to see and hear more about your work, partly because I think it would be great to see the graduation show from another department’s perspective, I would like to ask you if you would join me.
This could be anything from a 5minute coffee to ask you my most pressing questions, to a joint visit around the exhibition to view the work. This is an invitation for a private discussion, which would only be made public by the resulting display made in the vitrines. This would of course honour any suggestions or restrictions you request, and is also very open to your own contributions.
If you have any questions or remarks, please do not hesitate to ask!
Looking forward to hearing from you,
As you may, or may not, know—sometimes I draw and paint.
When I show these drawings and these paintings, I take a pile of them in my hands and, from a small height, drop them into a row on the floor. Upon meeting the ground, the inertia of their fall makes them slide (slightly) —picking up small dust particles, and bigger dirt particles, across their surfaces as they glide between a layer of accumulated dirt and the floor’s hard surface. They settle there, faces partly muted, almost as if they were trying to hide.
Upon asking Karin Iturralde to take these drawings and paintings out of my hands, a small, collaborative exhibition has been made in which I have made the paintings and drawings, and Karin has made the form from which they speak.
This exhibition will have a textual contribution by Diego Diez.
We invite you to join us on Monday 25 [tomorrow!], at 5pm.
Overschiestraat 188, 1062XK Amsterdam
Karin and Dee
Firstly, thank you!
Secondly, we should continue this conversation later (tomorrow?) In person, but in the meantime –sometimes its easier to get things out on (digital) paper so:
For me, today was a super strange experience because, as it was my work being exhibited, I suddenly felt that I should stand still. It felt like I should not walk around and look at the works because I knew them already, and yet my feet wanted to start walking, and my brain wanted to start turning, as it always does when it walks into an exhibition. It made me realise I have an exhibition-tic, that is, a (panegyrical) habit of searching exhibitions for that which makes them “work”.
My eye started jumping from work to work, from wall to work, from room to room, and every time it wanted to make a connection –to be drawn into a composition, a quality of line, a common thread– my mind would hold it back. And at the same time, in some kind of involuntary disembodiment, I started to become jealous of the person who had made them.
Sometimes when I enter exhibitions I feel that the bravery of the artist is on show. This feeling is very often triggered when works with humble aesthetics –crude depictions of everyday objects; singular line drawings; hasty sketches– are exhibited; and I relish the gesture of giving such fleeting moments (of making) the time and space to be viewed. While I have always given this explanation as to why I gravitate towards these kinds of works, I do not think I have ever been conscious of just how much it is the gesture of the artist –rather than the aesthetics of the works– that I am enamoured with at these exhibitions.
I guess I should admit that, while I am writing this, I am becoming increasingly aware that by drawing attention to this particular gesture of exhibiting, that I can once again deflect attention away from my drawings and paintings, and diffuse my participation in the part of the exhibition I enjoy. But I guess that is also what this exercise was (at least partially) about.
While I do not feel confident, and I do not feel brave, I do feel that through this exercise I have been able to practice, and extend, my trust –in you– and that through this action, you have been able to present fleeting moments and undirected explorations. It is then together that we (potentially) create the kind of exhibition that usually leaves me touched.
Which makes me see these exhibitions in a whole new light. Of course it is impossible to know the workings behind the exhibitions I see as “brave” –in fact, it is improbable to even think of them as stemming from the same root. But if the strange, disembodied jealousy I felt today could be used as a fictional measure of our exhibition to those, then I would say that the “bravery" I was jealous of today was an aesthetic of bravery, made of two parts: trust + care.
Which brings me to the part I’ve been wanting to write of all along: If there is one thing that truly left me touched today, it is the attention and energy you have given; your willingness to give time and to take care. If brave gestures are something I aspire to –something I am touched by– something that, for me, makes art human, then perhaps today I discovered it as a compound: a substance made of two or more parts.
That’s all from me for now,
Thanks again and see you tomorrow (at 10? or later in the day?)
Describe the content of your project as clear as possible. Also explain your projects relation to the theme and the key elements of Uncut. (300 words max.)
I would like to make a piece that encourages museum visitors to look at the museum rather than the art presented within it. I would do this by writing a text that explains how our information culture is directly affecting museum layouts/aesthetics. The text would be presented in one of two ways:
1. Recorded and played on the new audiotour system, or;
2. Printed in a leaflet in the style of Stedelijk’s exhibition introductions/overviews.
The aim would be for it to use, and dissolve into, the museum’s existing information/communication systems.
While the text will not directly discuss brain automation in relation to contemporary technology, as a whole it addresses another form of brain automation: assumptions. A big assumption made while visiting museums is to look at the art presented – ignoring the museum as a whole. The museum encourages this assumption by attempting to be an invisible/neutral host, but this aesthetic of ‘neutrality’ is constantly evolving. This text will address why and how this museum aesthetic is evolving by comparing and connecting museum spaces, and art, to our increasing exposure to/use of digital information. By addressing technology’s effect on museum aesthetics it will indirectly relate the text back to Uncut’s theme.
Deleted is an ongoing project through which small nuances of language are revealed. Made through the act of proofreading essays, these works exhibit the deleted and added letters, syllables, words and punctuation that otherwise melt unnoticed into edited texts.
Stripped of the content communicated by the essays, these minute alterations are isolated to reveal the absurd meticulosity applied to the written word. Highlighting the actions of an editor, the menial nature of the task is celebrated in poetic light; bemusing the significance of a dot, the absence of a letter, and the attentive eye employed to find them.
It crossed my mind on Saturday, but I didn’t bring it up.
Perhaps you are in the Netherlands to forget design and to stare at the beautiful Dutch grey skies and shiver in our cold spring weather. In which case you can ignore this.
But incase you are up for playing, I have a proposal for you.
A few months ago I made a series of exhibitions called Ten Traumatically Ineffective Projects in which I exhibited failed projects of other students and artists.
Right now I am trying to figure out how to document it.
My idea is to make a catalogue, but to make different versions, working with different graphic designers for each one and also making one completely on my own (I’ve started: its a 60page collaged nightmare in the best sense 😊)
If you think it could be at all interesting to you, let me know!
I’ll attach a written statement about the project to give you a better idea.
Hope Leiden is treating you well,