Platforms Project 2022

EX-MÊKH, Ellen Rodenberg, Maarten Schepers and Kees Koomen, participated in Platforms Project 2022. It was the tenth edition after two years of improvisation on the internet and a somewhat improvised edition in the fall of 2021. Ellen Rodenberg, Maarten Schepers and I liked the video we made for the internet edition in 2021: we built a booth with the usual measurements in the studio, and we filmed how we built an installation in the way we usually work. Platform Projects showed the video on the internet under the name Stage Arousal. Later it was shown in Paris on the front of EP7, a multidisciplinary building with 17 screens on the Avenue de France, near La Grande Bibliothèque.

This time we decided to build another booth with a different context. Not a white cube, but it had a wooden floor and walls. Moreover, we built it in the open air in the woods and the back side (the second wall) stayed open. As a result, it became a sculpture in itself. We started to work there, improvising and experimenting. Eventually it resulted in the provisional video Scenes from a Wormhole which we showed in the fair together with an installation which was made from material we had used in the video.

I decided that I wanted to make work on the basis of reinterpretation of some of my older work. The Paintings Ira la cual manda fuoco (1998) and La figura, con paura, storna (1997) came to my mind, from the project I did on the poem Donna me prega of the Italian renaissance-poet Guido Cavalcanti. Referring to the first painting I did a performance for the video in which I burned publications made about my visual work. This act shows the artistic practice of reconsidering your own work, burning older meanings and making it new. As to the second painting: I painted a self-portrait, naked with a burning match in my hand, turning away from the result of another performance I did for the video: a sheet of paper on which I breathed out, thereby spitting some chewed-on smarties on the sheet (Janus – breathing in-breathing out). The naked figure is the artist who is looking at his work before he goes to sleep. Or he thinks about his work awake in bed and goes down to the studio, in the nude as he sleeps, to see his work and to be struck by the power of what he did turning his head away in awe. It is a well-known effect, later to be surprised by what you did after having ended the day in the studio very unsure of it. The fact that the figure is naked has en extra layer, because Diogenes walked the streets of Athens naked with a lamp in his hand to look for virtue, another theme from my earlier works. With this some pictures of what EX-MÊKH showed in Athens:

A cabin in the woods (model)
EX-MÊKH: Wormhole (installation) – 2022
Links: Janus (breathing in breathing out), rechts: In Awe
Links – Ellen Rodenberg: Actor, rechts – Kees Koomen: Janus (breathing in – breathing out)
Kees Koomen: Janus (breathing in) – videostill
Kees Koomen: Janus (breathing out) – videostill
Kees Koomen: Janus (breathing in – breathing out)
Kees Koomen – In fuoco (videostill)
Kees Koomen: Grid
Maarten Schepers: Booth – Ellen Rodenberg: The actor is leaving

Platforms Project 2022

EX-MÊKH

HOK FluxBox

HOK FluxBox
To keep up a well-established Fluxus tradition, HOK commissioned their neighbourhood carpenter to make a HOK FluxBox, to be filled with contributions by their own gang of HOK artists and Fluxus people they admire. They made sure to have all the submitted pieces of art juxtaposed in the HOK FluxBox to a neat disarray of objects, cards, materials, and components. This unpremeditated assemblage has resulted in a tangible poetics and non-linear narrative as it was meant to.

Last week, HOK’s artist in residence Lula Valletta personally delivered the HOK FluxBox at the Museum FLUXUS+ in Potsdam Berlin. The HOK FluxBox, hand crafted by Bram Massaar, and filled to the brim with art works by Philip Corner, Jeff Perkins, Nico Lootsma, Dana LaMonda, Jordan Herregraven, Leonor Faber-Jonker, Counter Culture Chronicles, Ronin, Hans Köning, Weronika Trojanska, Lula Valletta, René van der Voort, Bobbi Oskam, Gaye Black, Mr. Pelham, Gavin Jay, Erwin de Hart, Harold de Bree, Kees Koomen, and our sadly missed Bob Lens, is now part of the Museum FLUXUS+ collection.
 
Fluxzeug (I used to make this kind of airplanes as a kid, using only material from the match box)
Bijdrage yours truly

Con alma

Kees Koomen: Dividido

Back in Holland after a satisfying presentation by EX-MÊKH at the Hybrid Art Fair in Madrid life continues. In between other projects I wrote some reports about Madrid. On chmkoome’s blog I published daily reports and I wrote a report on ARCO on the Art-site for Den Haag Jegens & Tevens . I published EX-MÊKH’s exhibition at the Hybrid Art Fair on the EX-MÊKH site under exhibitions.

Reporters mentioned Con Alma in reports in on-line magazines ( Liceo Magazine for instance) and lots of pictures of our work showed on social media. The comment of this journalist surprised me later to my satisfaction!

RUW

On friday there will be a presentation of RUW-magazine at HOK-Gallery in Den Haag from 19.00 h onwards. Issues #4 and #5 will be presented and also other artworks of the contributors will be shown. The presentation will be open during the weekend. Editor in chief Hans Könings asked me to take part in issue #5 which I did by using a little performance I did in Berlin in 2015. I wrote the next text about it in my diary:

Ich grub in Berliner Boden

Im Antlitz spiegelt sich Berlin

Ich hab mich mit einer Staubmaske gesucht

Da fand ich ein Faden der zu mir führte

I will also show two paintings from my Muse-series in this show.

The gallery is situated on the Westeinde 61 in Den Haag

Hybrid Art Fair

EX-MÊKH will participate in the Hybrid Art Fair in Madrid from Februari 24 to 27. The fair is held in a hotel in the centre of the city and participants are expected to exhibit in hotelrooms. We will present work under the name Con alma trying to give the neutral and functional hotelroom a soul, the soul of EX-MÊKH!
In the mean while publicity for participants is starting as you can see on this page!

RUW! #5

Cover RUW! #5

The artist magazine RUW! is an interesting initiative. Originally it started in Berlin because the Dutch editor, Hans Könings, lived in Berlin at the time. He asked a number of artists he knew to make an art-edition of 50 copies on A4 format and put those together in a cover especially designed for the issue at hand. The issue would be presented in an art-space with other work of contributing artists. Some years ago Könings moved back to Den Haag and he decided to start a Dutch edition of RUW! I have attended to three presentations of a new issue and I liked the idea. All the more, because I organised a similar project when studying in the US under the name Ysland – The Dutch American conspiracy.

Recently Hans asked me to contribute to RUW! #5 which already seemed very appealing to me. The theme would be Mud. So I agreed and used a performance I did in Berlin in 2014 and a text I wrote along with it as an inspiration for my page. The Text goes like this:

Ich grub in Berliner Boden

Im Antlitz spiegelt sich Berlin

Ich hab mich mit einer Staubmaske gesucht

Da fand ich ein Faden der zu mir führte

The presentation, which was scheduled on the 9th of January at HOK-gallery in Den Haag (NL), has unfortunately been postponed until further notice for obvious reasons. We’ll keep you posted.

edition on the studio floor
Kees Koomen: Da fand ich ein Faden der zu mir führte

Brief Encounters

Twee pagina’s van mijn bijdrage

Gisteren lag de nieuwe editie van het DeFKa REsearch magazine in de bus, 2021#4. In dat magazine staan een aantal pagina’s uit mijn Corona dagboek uit het begin van dit jaar waarin ik aantekeningen en schetsen plaatste over mensen die ik tijdens corona-wandelingen tegen kwam. Er werd gevraagd om bijdragen met als thema Souvenir & Residu. Mijn dagboeken pasten daar naar mijn mening naadloos in .

De schetsen en teksten heb ik later gebruikt om een aantal schilderijen te maken onder de naam Brief Encounters, die nu bij Het Bouwhuis in Deventer te zien zijn. De daaraan voorafgaande serie Berliner Porträte die de inspiratie was voor deze werken, is daar ook te zien zoals Gryanne van Het Bouwhuis hierboven toont!

Het Bouwhuis

DeFKa Research