MONUMENT FOR JAN ZWARTENDIJK
Unveiled on the 15th of June 2018 in Kaunas, Lithuania
I was asked by the Dutch Ambassador to Lithuania to design a monument to Jan Zwartendijk, the Dutch consul in Kaunas who helped thousands of Jews escape from Lithuania in 1940 by issuing them with forged visas.
More than 2,000 small light lines form a spiral more than seven metres in diameter, which swirls around the tree directly opposite Jan Zwartendijk’s former office: the light lines represent the survivors – adults and children – who, thanks to Jan Zwartendijk’s courageous act, survived the Holocaust. The intensity of the light varies, and every now and again a movement passes through them, they are joined together for life. A monument that celebrates life. The design was officially unveiled on the 15th of June in Kaunas, Lithuania, with two of Zwartendijk’s children present, one of the survivors (who came over specially from Australia), Dutch King Willem-Alexander, the president of Lithuania and the mayor of Kaunas.
On Thursday, 14th of June, I took part in the Dutch Radio 1 News broadcast with Jurgen van den Berg.
The artwork was realised in cooperation with Yens & Yens. It was assembled principally in the Netherlands and installed on site during the five days preceding the opening. It was a nail-biting process, but we are all very proud of the result and happy it was so well-received!
Unveiled to the users of the court building on the 4th of June 2018
Commissioned by the Dutch Central Government Real Estate Agency I created an artwork for the entrance to the brand new court building in Breda. A dynamic, technically innovative work made up of two blocks, each assembled from more than 8,000 small LED cubes, all of which can be controlled individually. This allowed me to show 3D moving images in the blocks.
The images are based on actions that are central in proceedings of the administration of justice. I’ve tried to present activities such as blackmail, theft, fraud and pulling the wool over someone’s eyes at a metaphorical level. The resulting images can be read literally as well as figuratively; they are simultaneously alienating and frivolous.
This work was unveiled to the users of the building on the 4th of June. The official opening for friends and the press will take place on 18 October 2018 – I will inform you further about this in the autumn. This work was also realised in close cooperation with Yens & Yens, and with animator Bram Verhavert. It is a unique work: nowhere else in the world is there a 3D artwork with moving figurative images in colour.
Performance dates 2018
Top: preparation and production process for the production
With cellist Katharina Gross, composer/percussionist Arnold Marinissen and scenography student Noor Stenfert Kroese I created the performance Pitch Dark. For Pitch Dark, Gross and Marinissen created an interdisciplinary production, spinning the musical plot for a performance in which light effects and objects made by Vos & Stenfert Kroese are the actors. In a pitch dark theatre, the senses are provoked in an interplay of sonic, optical and spatial impulses. Acoustic cello sounds, electronica, percussion, field recordings and musique concrete are blent to give rise to a feeling of intimacy and elusiveness.
The light scenes are inspired by the neurophysiological effects that sometimes appear in your vision: the images, afterimages, and movements you see with your eyes closed. These phenomena form the reference points for light installation. With the assistance of Mila Baumann, stage design and Jos Carpio, stage technique.
The production premièred in the Verkadefabriek venue in Den Bosch in November. On the 10th of June, we performed it at Festival Oranjewoud in Friesland and last Sunday, the 24th June, we were at the Bach Festival in Dordrecht. More performance dates will be confirmed, including at the Lichtmuseum in Unna, Germany and Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. I will be sending out more information regarding this soon.
With the support of the Mondriaan Fund, the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts, Performing Arts Fund NL and the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.
Relight White Noise
White Noise, my work at the Alticom tower on the Zuidas in Amsterdam, was delivered in 2009 and has been in need of a thorough restoration for some time now. I am delighted that Alticom and the City of Amsterdam, Zuidas have now found the financial resources for a complete restoration of this work. White Noise, the handwriting of the universe, is expected to shine once again in all its splendour by the end of this year..
After this busy past month, before going on holiday, I will draw up a plan for the Architectural Healing art event in the Koepelgevangenis, former prison building in Haarlem, organised by Cityscapes Gallery. I will then continue with projects for an apartment complex in Hoorn and a railway viaduct in Utrecht and with a work for the square in front of the Lichtmuseum in Unna, Germany..