Kunstvlaai 2010 - some im/pressions

june 09, 2010.

One of the questions raised by Bernard Müller during a short seminar on Tuesday June 8th 2010 at the Musée du quai Branly, in which he gave a first preliminary overview of last week's excavation of Spoerri's Déjeuner sous l'herbe, I found particularly interesting. Would not, at least some of, the diners, knowing that the 'scene' of which they were a part was to be buried (hence: preserved for possible future inspection), have left on purpose some specific object or other sign of their presence? And if they did, can the archaologists recognize them as such?

This is what I would have done, had I been there: as always, I would have taken my dictaphone along to the feast. And, as always, I would have recorded all that was sounding around me onto a cassette. That particular cassette I would have left on the table, to be buried along with the rests of the meal.

*  "What would a cassette tape sound like, dug up after having been buried in a garden's soil for 27 years," I wondered...

That train of thought then drove me off just a little further back in time, to this year's Kunstvlaai at the Amsterdam Westergasfabriekterrein.

The idea of a burried cassette tape reminded me of the picture I took there of an audio cassette tape kept in a freezer. It is a detail of the installation Avantgarde Below Zero by the Belgian artist Geoffrey de Beer, which was on show as part of the contribution to the Kunstvlaai by De Brakke Grond, a Flemish cultural center in Amsterdam.

bevroren cassette

I visited the Amsterdam Kunstvlaai with £PcM on sunny Wednesday May 19th 2010, shortly before moving on to Maastricht for the Kunsttour.


The photo above is a frontal view of part of Planetart's installation in the Gashouder, with girls from the Russian Never Porn Community nursing the technological singularity (inspired by Ray Kurzweil's book The Singularity Is Near). The Russian's collective ongoing performance was visually maybe not the most attractive, but surely among the most spectacular of things on view at the Kunstvlaai. That they won the Kunstvlaai price is no great surprise, really. Planetart's contribution included works by many other artists, like David Scheidler's "Coincident Sound with Hard Disk Orchestra" .


Kirsten Wilmink is currently a student at the Sandberg Institute, after having recently graduated from the ArtEZ AKI Academy of Visual Arts in Photographic Design. For her graduation project, The Truth About Germans, she used her own family members as models for a series of meticulously staged photographs depicting stereotypes and the (fading with time, but still persisting) prejudices about 'the Germans'. Obviously though, it is only a few figurative details that are specifically 'German' about Kirsten's fine photographs. Her images / scenes are far more universal than that: this is not just 'Germans'; it's all of us ...

I chose the above picture from Kirsten's series as part of this SB-entry, because it somehow seems a very apt illustration to accompany today's (June 9th, 2010) elections in the Netherlands. The next one, then, is for the upcoming soccer world championships. With or without you, Arjen Robben! ;-)



Here's a few more on-the-go Kunstvlaai phone shots:

never fuck
sewing film




We would have loved to smash a bottle, but the machine swallowed all of our coins.


tags: Kunstvlaai, Amsterdam

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