until 17 Jan
Curated by 1646 and Rosa Lleó
Artists: Pedro Neves Marques, Zahy Guajajara and others
YWY, Visions

YWY, Visions presents a new phase of the collaboration between Pedro Neves Marques and Zahy Guajajara. Central to the project is the fictional android YWY, as protagonist in the narrative, as plot device, and wholly as an artwork. Engaging in strategies of worldbuilding, YWY, Visions combines sci-fi elements with Amerindian cosmologies to contest a linear claim on the future, offering instead a clash of many worlds and visions in between indigenous and white perspectives. In doing so, it explores how artistic expressions might both acknowledge historical legacies and present visions of futures beyond dystopia.

YWY, Visions is both the title of Neves Marques' exhibition at 1646, and the title of the film that will be presented at a later stage in Madrid, at the esteemed CA2M (Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo) in an exhibition curated by Rosa Lleó. The film is an exciting partnership between CA2M, “la Caixa” Foundation” and 1646. For the show in The Hague, Lleó and 1646 are working closely together to curate the exhibition.

Norbert Schwontkowski – Everyone Wants to Go Home

Norbert Schwontkowski (1949-2013) is perhaps one of Germany’s best kept secrets. Yet these days his poetic work is gradually attracting more and more admirers outside his homeland. Inspired by Zen Buddhism, which he discovered on trips to Asia, he would seek the aesthetic of the moment, creating work that seems to touch upon a story, without ever telling us how it ends. Sometimes his paintings have a deep existential theme, and sometimes they present absurd situations from daily life, like a man rifling through the fridge in the middle of the night, looking for something to still his rumbling stomach. But the subject is always an individual in search of enlightenment and inspiration in a grim world. Thanks to Schwontkowski’s dry humour his work is never depressing, however. He often prepared by making quick pen sketches in the sketchbook he always carried with him. Everyone Wants to Go Home brings together some 80 paintings and over 40 sketchbooks from international collections, and has been created in collaboration with Kunstmuseum Bonn and Kunsthalle Bremen, where it was shown previously.

Artists: Eelco Brand, Ien Lucas, Joncquil, Klaus Baumgärtner, Marian Bijlenga, Ton van Kints, Warffemius and others
A sign of things to come

sending & giving some positive vibes for 2021 ! Painting, sculpture among them

24, 25, 26 en 27 December closed for Christmas

until 31 Jan
Curated by Marie-José Sondeijker
Artist: Gregor Schneider
Tote Räume

West Den Haag is thrilled to announce Tote Räume, Gregor Schneider‘s first solo exhibition in the Netherlands. Acknowledged as a groundbreaking artistic proposition, Schneider’s work can be regarded also as prophetic in a time of mandatory social distancing since it is based on mechanisms of physical isolation. Unfolding a sequence of rooms, sculptures, human figures, photos and videos spanning four decades of radical art making, the exhibition is arranged in response to, and exchange with, the original function of its building as the U.S. Embassy in the Netherlands from 1959 until 2018.

A clear example to this exchange is the ‘Interrogation Room’ – a pristine room replicating one of the prison cell modules in Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp, the U.S. detention facility located on Cuba’s southeastern coast. When incorporated into the setting of West Den Haag ‘Interrogation Room’ exceeds the boundaries of the aesthetic field and acquires the status of a real authoritarian space, outlining the exercise of power over the visitors and the potential violation of their bodily sovereignty.
Also included in the current sequence is ‘Cold Storage Cell’, which joins ‘Interrogation Room’ to politically contextualize Schneider’s continuous experiments in sensory deprivation and practices of stealth interrogation and clean torture, intermittently conducted throughout his entire oeuvre.
With the display of ‘Cryo-Tank Phoenix 3’ Schneider’s conception of sealed-off spaces extends beyond the political-jurisdictional framework provided by West Den Haag and obtains a metaphysical sense, turning every site in which it emerges into an intermediary zone situated between life and death, between this world and the world to come. A separate section in the exhibition is dedicated to ‘Geburtshaus Goebbels’, which involves the actual building in Mönchengladbach-Rheydt where Joseph Goebbels—the Reich Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany—was born. In ‘Geburtshaus Goebbels’ Schneider traces the roots of Nazi history almost literally, uncovering the physical foundations of Goebbels’ birthplace—the origins of his origins. Within Schneider’s universe ‘Geburtshaus Goebbels’ is also a follower of ‘Haus u r’, the artist’s own site of origin, standing a short distance away from it. ‘Haus u r’ is the name Schneider gave to the abandoned residential building, which he occupied from 1985 until 2001, all the while ceaselessly reconstructing its inner structure as an idiosyncratic typology of visceral rooms built inside the house’s preexisting rooms (with windows in front of windows, walls in front of walls, etc.). Being realized through a process of self-consuming duplication—whereby each room is also the concealed room into which it was inserted, and the space—the difference—between them—makes ‘Haus u r’ an enduring experience of cognitive dissonance in relation to which presence and absence, construction and elimination, are no longer distinguishable from one another.

In the context of the exhibition a series of performances will be staged specifically for the occasion. Additionally to the project ‘Tote Räume’ West will organise an international symposium in November of this year. With the working title: ‘Gregor Schneider: Kunst im Kopf’.

Gregor Schneider (Germany, 1969) is cosidered one of the most influential artists of the last three decades. Since the end of the 1990s Schneider has been presenting solo exhibitions in leading museums around the world, including, among many others, Musée d'Art Moderne de Paris, Museun of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf, Museo d’Arte Contemporena Roma. In 2001 Schneider won the Golden Lion award in the Venice Biennale of Art, and from then on his work is the subject of worldwide discussions and controversies. Schneider’s practice is an intersection between architecture, sculpture, and performance, intervening in the fabric of material, social and historical reality.

Artist: Agnes Mezosi
Brutalist Marcel Breuer

Brutalism is a movement within architecture that originated from modernism. At the end of the 19th century, society industrialized and it became possible to develop a new conception of art, architecture and the way we live together. The technological innovations of that time made it possible to resist traditional conceptions. Brutalism is characterized by the robust use of materials. For mostly large buildings unfinished concrete and masonry is used. By showing the character of natural materials, repeating forms and giving functionality the leading role, a very recognizable style is created.
In the photographs of Agnes Mezosi we see the similarities and differences between the different locations. Each time the details show in their rough elegance a timeless architectural style. The concrete forms, often with characteristic angles, are complemented by details of wood and stone surfaces. Together with a small group of contemporaries Breuer showed the sensual side of concrete, which made him one of the pioneers of brutalism from the middle of the last century.

Artists: Paul van der Eerden and Romy Muijrers
Paul van der Eerden, Romy Muijrers: SUITE

Paul van der Eerden (1954) and Romy Muijrers (1990) started their collaborative project ‘Suite’ in 2018. Either Van der Eerden of Muijrers starts with a first outline or stain on the paper that is elaborated upon by the other in several sessions, until the drawing is completed. Muijrers has a more detailed and soft approach, Van der Eerden adds sharp outlines and texts. The images vary from landscapes, plants, human figures to texts, some very detailed, others more simple and outspoken. They often convey a dreamlike state or mental image that has to be deciphered. The texts used are quotes from poetry and literature of among others Li Po, Han Shan, Kathleen Rain, William Blake but also popsongs from Joni Mitchell, The Byrds, The Hollies or Radiohead.

maximum 2 persons at a time, ring doorbell first

Artist: Cesare Pietroiusti
A Variable Number of Things

From mid-February, the artist Cesare Pietroiusti will succeed the Taiwanese artist Tehching Hsieh with the second one-year-long exhibition. This exceptional exhibition model is reserved for prominent artists with a distinctly exemplary role. Just like in the work of Hsieh, Pietroiusti is not focused on art as an object, but on life itself as a form of art. Since 1977, Pietroiusti has built up a very impressive oeuvre with a continuous flow of presentations. At West he will show a monthly changing selection of his works in the ‘corner offices’ of the former American embassy. Varying from early works and ‘artworks to be ashamed of’ to works that have never been shown or are new.

Carel Blotkamp – On Sculpture

From 28 November museum Beelden aan Zee will exhibit works by Carel Blotkamp (1945), artist and emeritus professor of modern art of the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam.

In Het Kabinet he will display both earlier and more recent works that relate to significant sculptures from the history of art. The material that Blotkamp uses is somewhat striking: brightly coloured sequins. His somewhat unusual choice of a medium that we generally associate with the decoration of clothing or clothing-related attributes can be described as ‘graceful gravity’. He often attaches the sequins to an existing image such as a postcard or an exhibition poster, either following that which is portrayed very closely or simply adding a few accents.

Blotkamp uses the small plastic sequins in order to furnish visual comments to works by artists that he admires such as Mondriaan, Barnett Newman, Dan Flavin and Giacometti. In doing so, he calls into question aspects relating to the status and reputation of both the artist and the work of art, for example, on the basis of his extensive knowledge and understanding of art history. In texts he makes use of statements made by artists who sometimes go into so much background detail that their meaning becomes clouded.

Although he retired from his professorship in 2007, Blotkamp is still exceptionally active. In addition to writing books and articles, he is also involved in setting up exhibitions, for example last year for the retrospective exhibition Carel Visser: Genesis, held in museum Beelden aan Zee.

Artist: Jos van Merendonk
PP-17 The community of the painted

“Every event which has really been painted – so that the pictorial language opens – joins the community of everything else that has been painted. Potatoes on a plate join the community of a loved woman, a mountain, or a man on the cross.”
– John Berger, “Hans Holbein the Younger (1497/8–1543)”, Portraits: John Berger on Artists

Jos van Merendonk does not base his paintings on the observable reality of the world around us. His works materialise out of the reality of his studio. He constructs them out of a limited number of forms. He paints from earlier drawings, revisits ideas and motifs from older work, and looks at the work of painters from earlier generations and – as painters do – borrows elements to use in his own. Over the past three decades, this has led to an idiosyncratic, multifaceted oeuvre.

The title “The Community of the Painted” derives from an essay by the English author and artist John Berger (1926–2017), quoted above. Though Berger was primarily writing about paintings that arise from and refer to the world around us, his argument can also be applied to Van Merendonk’s work. More than anything, Berger is writing about the artist’s intense way of looking; about how a reality-transcending representation of that which the artist has seen is the consequence of an interaction between the intensity of his or her gaze and the energy he or she receives from the subject that gaze is aimed at. According to Berger, that which is painted only comes to life, is only really painted, if it has truly been seen by the artist. By this he means that the visual language by which the painter transforms the subject into an image is not just accomplished but urgent. This interplay between intensive looking and creation, between what is seen and what is recorded in compelling imagery, is present in the reality of Van Merendonk’s studio. Other factors playing a role in the making of his art include the relationship between the artist and his subject, his chosen forms and working method, and the relationship between the artist and the painting he is creating. When Van Merendonk considers a work finished, he steps back, and the painting leaves the context of the studio to be exhibited or become part of a collection.

A certain level of intensity of gaze paired with a highly urgent visual language is the foundation of all art that matters, as Berger saw and aptly expressed in his essay. For him, a subject that is truly seen and then visualised in compelling imagery joins the “community of the painted”. This community encompasses many forms and styles and spans centuries: painted potatoes on a plate become part of the same community as a painted beloved woman, mountain, man on a cross. So too do the painted, pendulum traces, ovals, Z-shapes and residual forms in Van Merendonk’s works.

Roland Groenenboom

Joseph Sassoon Semah

Exile and hospitality are key themes in the work of Joseph Sassoon Semah (b. 1948, Baghdad). In 1950 he and his parents were forced to leave Iraq for Israel, and eventually ended up in Amsterdam, via London, Paris and Berlin. The exhibition will include 36 architectural models of houses, a synagogue, schools and cultural buildings that refer to the liberal Jewish culture of his Babylonian ancestors – a culture which, he says, barely exists except in memory now. The work of Sassoon Semah allows plenty of scope for critical reflection on identity, history and tradition, and is part of the artist’s long exploration of the relationship between Judaism and Christianity as sources of western art and culture. The aspirations of his grandfather, the Chief Rabbi of Baghdad, to promote dialogue between different religions and world views, resonates in everything he makes.

In response to the Corona crisis and the necessary and restrictive measurements, West is making its program accessible to all people staying at home with the section Thuistezien (dutch for watch at home).

With Thuistezien the institution wants to contribute to the quality of life in this serious situation. By means of a daily video, publication, report or column, the institution aims to soften the stay at home with a moment of imagination and reflection. For suggestions and reactions you can contact us via: thuisblijven@westdenhaag.nl.

See everything here:

until 05 Apr
Lisa Brice

Lisa Brice (b. 1968, Cape Town) addresses the art historical tradition of the female nude. The women in her paintings, drawings and sketches are engaged in everyday activities: smoking, lingering in front of the mirror, dancing, painting. Their pose often references media images or iconic compositions by artists like Manet, Degas and Picasso. Women have for centuries been depicted as passive figures – rendered by and for the male gaze – but Brice shifts the perspective in her work. Brice lives and works in both London and Trinidad. In 2018 she had a solo exhibition at Tate Britain. This will be her first museum exhibition in the Netherlands.

until 18 Apr
Popel Coumou

Artist and photographer Popel Coumou (b. 1978) plays in her work with the main elements of photography: light, paper and perception of reality. By carefully lighting her collages she manages to give the paper relief a third dimension, bringing the flat surface to life. In a space with tall windows depth is created by the sunlight shining in, a simple little house appears in a large field, and illuminated geometric shapes loom out of a dark and desolate natural landscape. In other images, we realise only after looking very carefully that what we are seeing are not life-sized objects, but miniatures still lifes in clay, some of which even still bear the occasional fingerprint. Popel Coumou creates empty spaces, graphic lines and compositions verging on the abstract. Although her work rarely features any figures, there is always a sign of recent human presence, such as an empty chair or an open door. Popel has produced new work specially for the projects gallery at Fotomuseum Den Haag , using the space itself while at the same time revealing her creative process. She has enlarged her collage technique, which she had previously used mainly in a small format, to create an installation that will allow visitors to step into her illusionary world. Popel Coumou drew inspiration for the work from the iconic Kunstmuseum Den Haag building next door, designed by architect H.P. Berlage (1856-1934), as well as the architectural lines of the Fotomuseum.

Modern & Contemporary Art

In this auction you can discover works of art by Kees Timmer, Ma Ye, Jan Sierhuis and Erno Verkerk.
The auction will take place online from 21 - 31 January (until 20:00).

In 2021 it will be 210 years ago that Venduehuis officially started as an auction house in The Hague. In all those years of auctioning, many works of art that have come under the hammer have been given a place in important national and international collections and museums, either permanently or on the basis of long-term loan. One of the most beautiful female portraits in art history is Johannes Vermeer’s ‘The Girl with a Pearl Earring’. This world-famous painting, now in the collection of the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague, is one of the pearls that was auctioned at our auction house in 1881. The Venduehuis is located in the former mayor’s residence on Nobelstraat.

Artist: Ellef Prestsæter

Page Not Found presents an online lecture by curator Ellef Prestsæter.

Artists: Ana Navas, Evelyn Taocheng Wang and Mila Lanfermeijer
III – She spins the thread, she measures the thread, she cuts the thread

In this exhibition, the three artists explore the meaning of repetition, appreciation and appropriation. In seven rooms, designed for them by architect Donna van Milligen Bielke, they tell a layered story about friendship, artistic kinship and their autonomy within. Copying and reproduction are important ways of understanding, appreciating and interpreting their place in art history.

12 Feb – 20:00 – 21:00
Artists: Ana Navas, Evelyn Taocheng Wang and Mila Lanfermeijer
Artists Talk

On Friday February 12 we present an artists talk with Ana Navas, Evelyn Taocheng Wang and Mila Lanfermeijer. Hosted by curator Rieke Vos we will walk through the various rooms of |||, during which the artists will talk about the thread that connects not only their artistic work but also their lives.

14 Feb 20 Mar
Artists: Andre Kruysen and Ton van Kints
What’s on

recent work of Ton van Kints and recent sculpture of André Kruysen

28 Feb 04 Apr
Artist: Nour-Eddine Jarram
Nour-Eddine Jarram

Parallel to his restrospective exhibition 'Beeldenstorm' ('Iconoclasm') at the Rijksmuseum Twenthe Nour-Eddine Jarram (1956) has a solo show at Galerie Maurits van de Laar featuring works on paper and paintings.

Jarram studied at the Académie des Beaux Arts in Casablanca and at the AKI in Enschede NL. He decided to continue to live and work in the Netherlands and developed a characteristic style in which Islamic calligraphy, Dutch golden age painting, biblical figures and surrealist motifs come together, next to poignant images of refugees and Moroccan youth. The exhibition at the Rijksmuseum Twenthe follows Jarram’s creative development and his quest to balance his preference for figuration and the influence of Morocco’s ornamental visual culture. In his work Jarram wants to rethink history by creating images that alter our view of the past.

28 Mar 15 May
Artist: Zhang Shujian

The exhibition "Face" provides an overview of the work of the Chinese artist Zhang Shujian of the past ten years. Since his graduation from the prestigious Central Acadamy of Fine Arts in Beijing, Zhang has developed a fascination for the human face and all its odd features. His merciless portraits present a unique point of view on the social fabric of contemporary Chinese society. Zhang Shujian (Hunan, 1987) lives and workes in Beijing.
Curator: Melle Hendrikse

28 Mar – 13:00 – 17:00
Artist: Zhang Shujian

The exhibition "Face" provides an overview of the work of the Chinese artist Zhang Shujian of the past ten years. Since his graduation from the prestigious Central Acadamy of Fine Arts in Beijing, Zhang has developed a fascination for the human face and all its odd features. His merciless portraits present a unique point of view on the social fabric of contemporary Chinese society. Zhang Shujian (Hunan, 1987) lives and workes in Beijing.
Curator: Melle Hendrikse

24 Apr – 14:00 – 18:00
Curated by David Maroto
Artists: benjamin seror, Cally Spooner, Mark von Schlegell and Raimundas Malašauskas