GlassFever was a large-scale event, organised by DordtYart in collaboration with Studio Berengo at Murano, Venice (Italy), presenting the use of glass in contemporary art. It was for this occasion that DordtYart commissioned Rossella Biscotti, Folkert de Jong, Zoro Feigl, Tomáš Libertíny and myself to each make a new work in Venice, with Berengo's maestros. The brief moment when the glass comes out of the oven and is still hot, fluid and radiant served as a starting point for my design. Before the glass solidifies and turns hard, glossy and motionless, it is a bulb full of energy. I have tried to translate that magical moment into a monumental, dynamic object of cast blocks of glass, which will be brought back to life by the light of day.
Passage de la Baleine refers to the arcades of Paris as well as to the times when the old marine clay region of Friesland was cloven in two by a sea arm and Leeuwarden was a settlement at the Middelzee. The ribs of a whale skeleton serve as the bows of a passage. The whale seems stuck in the narrow ally in the centre of Leeuwarden, but LED lights incorporated in the 60-meter-long metal structure suggest the movement of an immense, organic leviathan.
Dim. 60 x 3.40 x 7.80m
Bead-blasted maritime aluminium, multi-coloured LEDs and computer
In the open square by the entrance to the building is a large black steel box with a pattern of wavy lines carved into it. Peering in through the gaps reveals a system made up of tubes and cylinders, steps and little bridges. The box leads down into the car park. Walking underneath it, you can look up into the box- an “information refinery” that doesn’t give up its secrets easily. From there, you can see that the tubes and cylinders seem to drip light onto the car park floor. Outside, through the slits in the black box, you can catch a glimpse of the processes taking place inside. In the evening, a strange light emanates from the black box on the square, suggesting the workings of a large brain.
Dim. 4.30 x 4.30 x 4.30m
steel, aluminium, LEDs, micro processor
A lady on a swing, up in the trees- this work took its inspiration from paintings by French artists Watteau and Fragonard. The dress, made of thick layers of iridescent foils, changes colour moving back and forth.
Zomeren op de Buitenplaats (Summer in the country) showed site specific works by Atelier Van Lieshout, Inti Hernandez, Chikako Watanabe, Giny Vos, Job Koelewijn, Maze de Boer, Berend Strik and students from the Amsterdam University of the Arts.
The dress was made in collaboration with Niki Milioni
In a former machine hall in Dordrecht the angel Gabriel appears through foils of transparent colour. Hanging suspended from the ceiling, thirty layers deep, the rectangular foils create a light and shadow effect which grants the image a sense of spatiality. The apparition plays with the incoming light, momentarily changing the hall into a sacral space.
Dim. 10 X 16 X 7 m
88 coloured foils, measuring 560 x 60 cm, 30 x 60 and 90 x 120 cm, 32 horizontal cables
Realised with the assistance of Janina Schipper and Santiago Fernandez de Mosteyrin
On a large wall alongside the entrance to LantarenVenster a drawing of horses at full gallop is created in lines of light. The horses are never seen in their entirety, but light up fragmentarily in hasty sketch form. The work refers to the rich history of the representation of running horses: from the earliest cave paintings, through Muybridge’s photographic series and the Western as a film genre right up to advertisements and billboards seen in contemporary urban space. The drawing’s touch is based on the scratches in celluloid so typical of early films.
Founded in 1949, LantarenVenster has a long history as an avant-garde theatre for film, dance, music and drama. When moving from the disorderly streets of the city center to a new, much more metropolitan location at Wilhemnina dock (where the Holland-America Line used to have its headquarters and which later became the symbol of emigration to the New World) in 2010, and concentrating its program on arthouse movies and jazz music, LantarenVenster commissioned a multimedia artwork for the foyer as well as for the venue’s projection onto the street outside. Recalling jazzy rhythms and city buzz, Light Gig can be seen from the inside as well as from the outside, and aims to preserve in some of the venue’s rich history while responding equally energetically to the new location.
Dim. 21 x 7.5 m
Wood, 300 white LED strips of various lengths, microprocessor
Interference was made for K2G, a gallery located under the Keizer Karel Overpass on the A9 highway in Amstelveen. On both sides of the road a total of 12 panels were installed showing noise, from which pixelated images of art historical icons appear and disappear.
Dim. 190x 135 x 15 cm Perspex, plastic, 2034 white LEDs, 12 microprocessors
The Window of Your Eyes consists of 200 tree trunks, erected amongst the trees and assembled in circles like a coven, in the park surrounding the Provincial Government Building in Assen. The middle parts of the trunks making up the inner circles are replaced with glass tubes that emanate a soft, diffuse glow. The radiating tubes bring out a form suggestive of a large bowl that seems to reflect the colours of the sky- a whirlwind, a cloud, mist or witte wieven. The work relates to land art strategies of large scale landscape interventions, introduced by Robert Smithson in the 1970’s. Simultaniously, the the work refers to the Balloër Kuil, a pit in the landscape found in this very location, a historical place for (spiritual) gatherings.
Dim. 4 x 20 x 20 m
200 tree trunks, 81 glass tubes, 772 multicoloured LEDs, computer
An artwork for a residential complex in a busy, dark and neglected alley – a favourite spot for public urinating in the centre of Amsterdam. The title of the work, The White Cube, refers to the exhibition space in the form of a white cube, a pristine, pure white space in which silent contemplation and attention prevail. The White Cube creates a clear, clean, almost sacred place in the heart of the city, evoking a museum-like atmosphere. A suggestion of exhibition spaces is created in perspective lines painted in light and fitted into sheets of thin, corrugated aluminium. A drawing that incorporates existing windows, doors and letterboxes, giving the whole wall space the illusion of depth.
dim. 12 x 3.70 m
Aluminium, steel, toughened glass and LEDs
The shop windows at America Today have been temporarily turned into a rough pixel movie screen. Moving images from early cinema show simple human activity and everyday happenings. The low resolution of the images make them look like they originate from the very beginnings of the computer era.
Dim.3.20 x 19 m
Cardboard, paper, 1536 white LEDs and computer
In the mortar seams of the brick walls built around an electricity substation, green pulsing lines of light move horizontally around the entire building: like a light chart with peaks and throughs in the wave pattern it seems to monitor the activity rate in the neighbourhood. An abstract and playful depiction of the concept of energy, Elektrowachter makes the function of the hidden substation to provide the neighbourbood with energy palpable and concrete.
The goal for integrating an artwork into the newly built neighbourhood called Weidevenne in the city of Purmerend was to transform the existing electrical substation into an eye-catching symbol for the new inhabitants. The substation could not be removed, but was thought of as an eyesore in the otherwise much refurbished area. Instead of simply concealing the thing Elektowachter took its essential characteristic of generating and providing energy as a starting point and used it as a metaphor. Its prominent location at the entrance to the city and the odd rhythm of its light wave makes it distinguishable from afar- it can even be seen from the highway and thus functions as a rather flashy signpost.
Dim. (13 x 9 x 15) x 7m high
Brick, steel, LEDs and computer
Round and Round is a temporary, cinematographic light installation, which combines early film footage with early, rough computer images and translates these into blown up pixels. The exceptional architecture of the KunstKapel - a round, continuous wall - is adopted to construct an installation of 4096 LED pixels, that plays a continuously changing, computer programmed pattern of light and dark over the entire wall. Because the pixels can adjust to a total of 256 different grey shades they can form nuanced and recognisable images in the otherwise abstract pattern. As such, the room is transformed into a zootrope, the first existing device that was able to bring about moving images. The light in the room only comes from the installation and the viewer is right in the middle of it, surrounded by fragments of the earliest examples of motion picture. The material used is originally from a.o. Eadweard Muybridge, the brothers Lumière, Thomas Edison, Hans Richter, Oskar Fischinger and Busby Berkeley.
Dim. 20 x 20 x 4.20m, 360º panorama
Cardboard, tracing paper, 4096 white LEDs (pixels) and computer
In the Kromhout Barracks images are projected on a 32-meter-long, suspanded wall by means of 2624 LEDs. Inside, in the corridor, only a pattern of light and dark patches can be made out, but on the ouside, from the Weg tot de Wetenschap, pixelated moving images can be seen, based on military observational instruments such as radars, infra red and night vision devices or searchlights. A flock of birds takes off from a camouflage pattern, trees in a forest change into zebra stripes en from an image of rustling leafs a military vehicle appears.
Dim. 2 walls of 16 x 3.5 m
164 aluminium tubes, 2624 white LEDs and computer
The work Crystal Palace is located at the entrance to the Elicium by Benthem Crouwel Architects – the new building for the Amsterdam RAI exhibition and conference centre. Recognisable spatial objects appear in a cube consisting of thin aluminium tubes and white LEDs. A ceaseless stream passes by – a chair, a vase, a house, a ball – all showing off their seducive allure in a glittering display. Icons of our modern age, they float magically and weightlessly through space. They revolve on their axes, collide with one another, lose their shape, implode or disintegrate.
Dim. 8 x 5 x 5 meter, 256 aluminium tubes, 4096 light dots, each made up of 6 white LEDs, computer
With a big bang, on December 2nd in 2009, the work White Noise for the telecommunication tower at the Zuidas (Amsterdam) was opened. Every night, high up in the tower a dynamic image appears, a twinkeling universe where stars fall and planets light up, where meteorites swish by and small explotions take place. Every now and then, codes of letters and numbers pop up, as a sign of human communication.
Dim. 4 platforms Ø 50 x 20 m Galvanised steel, 1044 LEDs, computer
Miracle in Between was a temporary work on Ramlila Ground, a large open field between Old Delhi and New Delhi. Five hundred bamboo poles of various lengths were planted in a grid in the ground. On top of some of them light bulbs were attached. When lit, those dots formed a three-dimensional drawing of a boat. The light intensity of the lamps varied slightly, and made the boat look like it was rocking adrift. The work was part of the 48⁰C.public.art.ecology festival, with a.o. Subodh Gupta and Tomas Saraceno.
Dim. 21.5 x 19 x 5 m 500 bamboo poles, 180 light bulbs, DMX-mixer
Under the Stadsbalkon (City Balcony) that was installed in front of Groningen’s historical train station, a snow globe is hung upside down from the ceiling. Every few minutes, the train station appears as a crystal light construction, to then be concealed in a cloud of shimmering snowflakes and fade out into its own shadow.
Second Thought is a reaction to the visible tension between the old station and the new Stadsbalkon. In the snow globe, the train station lights up like an enchanting apparition. Each time, however, its shadow, like a hovering bat, overtakes the scene. The work aims to reflect on the things that have changed and are changing- a souvenir for a place that has been taken out of sight.
Dim. 3.00 x 2.00 x 1.35 m Perspex, wood, LEDs
In front of Apeldoorn Railway Station, sands drift across a large glass wall. Stirred up by a gentle breeze, whirled around in surging storms or lulled to rest in moments of calm- programmed LEDs control the shifting patterns, causing minimal, sometimes tempestuous changes in the landscape. Also on a larger scale the landscape shifts, as the hills roam unhindered. Sometimes the sand heaps up to one side as if in the hollow of a dune, an impression reflected by the basin-shaped square.
Dim. 100 x 4 m
Etched glass, 1.3 million LEDs and control system
A construction of a building with only its frame remaining has been placed in Nijmegen’s Limos Park. At dusk, when the streetlights are switched on, a floating interior lights up. The construction is a remnant of the Officers’ Hotel that used to be located here, on what was a gated military base before the area was turned into a residential district. A corner of the hotel building was spared from being demolished. Its walls and floors were cut open and when the night falls a table and a chair appear and stick out on all sides from the interior. Inside and outside blend in this construction, which is open and closed, vacant and inhabited at the same time. It is a symbol for the disclosure of the terrain, and a reflection on ideas about private and public space.
Realised in collaboration Bart-Jan Hooft
Dim. 6,5 x 7 x 8,5 m
Bricks, concrete, steel and LEDs
When the heavy, seven-metre safe door in the hall at Shell Headquarters opens with a click, a narrow beam of radiant light escapes through the chink. This is where the Sun’s energy is stored and guarded. A digital panel placed next to the door shows yield and consumption rates. When the amount of energy generated by the sun is higher than the amount consumed, the door opens. In the artwork a fictive twenty-four-hour day is condensed into twenty-four minutes. Depending on how much solar energy is generated, the door is open for 1 to 6 minutes during that time.
Dim. 7 x 3 m
Copper, LEDs, microcontroller
A moving light stain traces the walls and ceiling of a swimming pool like a flash light. Sometimes the light pauses, trembling slightly, zooms in, then out, speeds up or slows down, disappearing to reappear elsewhere. Simultaneously, three-dimensional projections of bridges, sci-fi constructions and other kinds of silhouettes emerge all around the pool. Images of our contemporary mythology light up to sooner or later fade out.
Dim. 6 x 25 m2
Fibers, wood, white LEDs, computer
6.500 white LEDs have been fitted to the profiled cladding along the entire length of the facade of the Urban District Council building. Switching off a number of these LEDs creates voids that form words. These words are constantly changing and in turn form series of words that have an associative relationship with the surrounding area and with what goes on inside the building. The words appear in a rhythmic sequence, a new one every twenty seconds: MISTROOST - MOERSTAAF - MODEMOER – LAMOER. The work is also visible from the trunk road and from passing trains.
Dim. 76 x 6,5 m
White LEDs, computer
A spatial screensaver: a “spacesaver”. Thin neon tubes fill up with the colours white, red, yellow, blue and green, just like the Microsoft screensaver. Their total length measures up to one kilometre. A three-dimensional drawing, it hangs almost entirely suspended. The screensaver is literally transposed from the computer to the canteen, the place where people take a break. The coloured lines run along the walls and the ceiling, and into the space. They fill up in varying speeds and rhythms, sometimes meet and pause in a certain composition for several minutes. The transportation of a stream of information: a network.
Dim. 13 x 8 x 19 m
Neon tubes with a 5.5 mm diameter, computer
In the lobby of the Breitner Tower, the newly-built Philips Headquarters in Amsterdam, a large mirror wall is installed. In the mirror, words light up which refer to what goes on inside the building - meetings, schedules, exchange rates and the daily menu from the canteen – or are otherwise derived from poetry and art texts. The words, their rhythm and the way they appear form an associative narrative full of images. When the words are turned off, the work presents itself as a plain mirror wall, reminiscent of the one in the Palace of Versailles.
Dim. 10,5 x 3,6 m
Mirrors, LEDs and computer
In the city of Leiden, giant digital micro-organisms squirm about in a Victoria Lake-shaped stain on the façade of Museum Naturalis. Like cells under a microscope they chase and bump into one another, they multiply, grow, clone and disperse. Some go slowly, or step by step, other move rapidly. Others again just stand still, trembling. Some spread, others vanish.
Under a microscope, various organisms in a drop of water were selected based on their form and behaviour, and they were attributed a type of character. This resulted in a choreography for the digital micro-organisms which was written as a dialogue, by an especially designed computer program. During the day the work can be seen from the streets around the museum and from the passing trains. At night it can also be seen in the city.
Dim. 8,5 x 8,5 x 0,02 m
100.000 LEDs in red, green, yellow and blue, plastic, aluminium, computer
Amorphous black objects and rows of LED displays stand on a bare wood table, chair and bookshelves. The displays show letters that form words. The letters flip ceaselessly but in a variable tempo, forming new words all the time. These words were made up associatively and have a poetic relation to the black objects. At unexpected moments, this poetic and experimental time is interrupted by words like GELD (money), TIJD (time) of LIEFDE (love) that roll by from right to left over the displays.
When night falls, the contours of a medieval castle become visible on the New York City skyline, seen from the promenade in Brooklyn Heights. This form comes into being by specifically turning on certain lights in twenty-three Manhattan skyscrapers. The watchtowers, turrets and battlements that are mirrored in the waters of the East River create a dream-like image that is as majestic as it is ephemeral.
Dim. 90 x 130 cm
C-print, 10 copies
This project involves the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam in its entirety. Across the floors and walls of its rooms enormous wooden sculptures have been erected. The monumental installation divides the museum into black and white sections. In the hall, twelve monitors, connected to surveillance cameras, are installed that compose the word WATCH. The letters appear to be two-dimensional. It is only on closer inspection that you start noticing the people moving about between the letters and you realise what you’ve been looking at.
I specifically chose Stedelijk Museum Schiedam to design this project for, because its architecture as well as its surveillance system matched the concept of the work. The opening performance was done by twelve attendants from various museums.
Wood, twelve cameras, twelve monitors
The windows on the facades of the three Europoint tower blocks at Rotterdam’s Marconi square form the words WORK TO DO. The text appears as the lights inside a number of the offices are switched on while all the rest is switched off. While the night falls, the words become more and more distinguishable. They can be read from a very far distance because of the complex’s strategic location.
3 tower blocks, 21 floors, plastic tarp, office lights