Middelheimmuseum Antwerp

Since Lode Craeybeckx in 1950 initiated the Middelheimmuseum it has grown to become one of the most imposing sculpture gardens in Europe. The collection consists currently of 400 sculptures, of which there are more than 200 in the park. The initiator and socialist mayor of Antwerp, Lode Craeybeckx has been appropriately immortalized by Vic Gentils with a hull of plowshares and a gown made of steel.

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Vic Gentils - Lode Craeybeckx - 1972 (230 x 120 x 100 cm)

 

The old Middelheim estate is already mentioned in the 14th century. It now occupies an area of 30 hectares and besides the Castle there are several exhibition pavilions, a flower garden and a landscaped orchard. In 2000, the park got a new outdoor venue, desgined by the French landscape architect Michel Desvigne. New purchases, such as the Bridge without a name of Ai Weiwei (2015) are located here.The park contains the old and new 'avant garde' next to each other and there is a large collection of French sculpture from Rodin to see. For me the sculpture 'Zotte Geweld' (1912) by Rik Wouters is the most convincing representation of the joy of life that Middelheim evokes in us. 

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Nel, the wife of Rik Wouters is portrayed here, she was his favorite model, also in his colorful paintings.

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Near the casle delves Misconceivable (2010) by Erwin Wurm into the water

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Tony Cragg: Envelope - 1996 (238 x 150 cm) bronze

The hushed dolmen of the French artist Eugène Dodeigne give the forest a mystical aura. The 'Drie Staanden' are made of rough blue lime stone coming from Soignies.

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Eugène Dodeigne - Drie Staanden - 1978 (190 x 61 x 52 cm)

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Pablo Gargallo - Profeet - 1933 (236 x 65 x 50 cm) 

Pablo Gargallo shared with Picasso a studio in Paris around 1930, he experimented with different materials for his Prophet, but also made classical sculptures in marble and stone. 

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Giacomo Manu - Kardinaal - 1952 (170 x 49 x 51 cm)

Manzu was a personal friend of Pope John XXIII and combined Marxism and Roman Catholic faith, for Italy no unusual combination. There are more than fifty different sculptures of Cardinals made by him.

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Jessica Stockholder - Born of Landscape Linoleum - 1999

(250 x 840 x 1270 cm)

This installation consists of concrete, nylon, methal and boxwood. Jessica Stockholder has made in this installation optimal use of the natural environment of the park: the boxwood hedge has been integrated in the artwork.

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installation of a new piece of art

Middelheim Museum and Park are worthwile visiting. There are few places in Europe that can exhibit such an impressive collection of sculptures. Middelheim is open all year round, closed only on Mondays. Visiting hours are from 10-17. Visiting address of the Middelheim Museum is Middelheimlaan, Antwerp. 

Cornelia Schleime: Ich zeige nicht Alles

Cornelia Schleime (1953, Berlijn) gives free rein to her mythical creatures in her exhibition Ich Zeige nicht Alles in Museum Bommel van Dam. For her is Art "Tragik, Liebe und Leidenschaft" as we can read in her autobiography. Here we encounter little romantic, but tension, eroticism and alienation, beautiful transformations from animal to human, fairy-like creatures. You can dream away, but stay alert, because you never know what wil happen. 

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Portrait

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Equlibriste (2008)

Equilibriste is another enigmatic creature, half human/ half animal and it gleams in the wings of the Museum Bommel van Dam. The drawings in the serie ' Aus die Reihe Camouflage' are another impulse tot the imagination: a modern version of Ovid's Metamorphoses?

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Aus der Reihe Camouflage (2008)

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Falscher Hase (2008)

Cornelis Schleime works in series, her human/animal mutants are fabulously beautiful, but what intrigues me most are her portraits. Mostly woman. Fascinating restrained, never effusive or exuberant, there is always melancholy, perhaps she stayed to long in the GDR?

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Portrait 2008 (privat collection Feyen, The Hague)

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The Exhibition of Cornelia Schleime Ich zeige nicht Alles can be visited till 25th of september 2016 in Museum Bommel van Dam (Venlo) en then in Berlin, where the artist will be rewarded the Hanna-Hoch-Preis for her oeuvre.

 

Japan: Modern. Collection Elise Wessels

 

 

Since mid 19th century Japan was an important source of inspiration for western artist. Vincent van Gogh collected Japanese prints and painted his 'plum trees in bloom' based on a woodcarving by Utagawa Hiroshige (1857).

Ishikawa Toraji, Suzu no ne (1935)

The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam currently displays 170 Japanse prints dating early 20th century, courtesy by collector Elise Wessels. 

Koizumi Kishio, Shinjuku (Tokyo, 1935)

During this time period Japan experienced rapid growth of industrialisation and modernisation, causing great changes in landscape and social relations. For artists it lead to new perspectives and resulted in 2 new currents in the art of prints: the Sosaku Hanga and the Sosaka Hanga.

Ishii Hakutei, Mizugi (1932)

On the one hand artists reverted to traditional printing techniques such as woodcarving and block printing. On the other hand we see technical experiments and the introduction of new themes, like the swimmer shown above as part of the series 'Modern Woman' by Ishii Hukutei.

Uehara Konen, Dotonbori (1928)

The beautifully executed catalogue offers a solid introduction on the two variations of print art: the Sosaku Hanga and the Shin Hanga. The second one was a style closely related to the classic Japanese Ukiyo-e prints. The Sosaku was more experimental and incorporated modernity in its pictures. 

The exhibition 'Japan: Modern' is on display at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam till September 11th 2016. 

Marcel Broodthaers

An amazing exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (New York): Retrospective Marcel Broodthaers. Broodthaers (1924-1976) was originally a poet, but he called it quits by the time he was forty. He developed himself into one of the most talked about visual artists since the Second World War. Fascinated by language, Surrealism, Magritte's magic, averse to art patrons and artistic trics: a profile of Marcel Broodthaers. Between 1968 and 1972 he travelled with his own 'Musée d'Art Moderne, Départment des Aigles' and many of the pieces are currently shown at MoMA.

Words, handwritten or typed, painted or spoken, language was ubiquitous in the artwork of Broodthaers. Images that uses repeatedly are eggshells, mussels, fries, coal and other associations with Belgium. These images are his brand. Mockery and compassion. 

Even the fable 'The Raven and the Fox' (1968) doesn't escape Broodthaers' imagination. In a movie-projection at MoMA we no longer see the words but in the background we hear his voice, which sounds warm and sonorous. 

Marcel Broodthaers worked with materials that were up for grabs, like the eggshells: signs of renewal and at the same time an empty cap. He wanted to express himself in a Belgian vocabulary, a sneer to all those savages who used art as a symbol of nationalist pride. It all comes together in the Belgian tricolour with eggshells and a mussel pan. 

frites, mussels, eggs

His most comprehensive projects was the travellng museum 'Musée d'Art Moderne, Départment des Aigles'. He starts in 1968 and for four years he tours around with beautiful installations such as 'Winter Garden'. It is a museum filled with decors (to stay with Broodthaers' terminology) decorated with palm trees and pictures of exotic birds. The decorations are not all without obligation. In the two decors depicting the nineteenth and twentiest century he places two antique cannons as guardians by the entrance, watching over a camping table with a jigsaw puzzle of the Battle of Waterloo and a couple of automatic firearms. 

the twentiest century - decor with a jigsaw puzzle of the Battle of Waterloo on the table

the mantle of Maria, in the colour blue as her garment is always depicted, here with a metaforical bag of new life

This retrospective exhibition of Marcel Broodthaers can be seen at the Museum of Modern Art in New York until May 15th. Afterwards the exposition moves to the Arte Reine Sofia in Madrid and in spring 2017 it arrives at the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein Westfalen in Düsseldorf. It comes highly recommended by your blogger. 

 

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Are you interested in one of our artists' work? We would be happy to advise you in makng a purchase from our collection. We understand that you probably will not buy a work based on only a photo, so we suggest that we make an appointment for you to view the work in person. Contact triple A projects and one of our associates will gladly awnser your questions and assist you with the purchase of a beautiful work of art. 

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Triple a projects actively works for artists to find appropriate channels to bring their work to the attention of art lovers. We shall regularly organize ehibits to showcase a selection of artworks from our collection. These events shall be announced in due time. Should you have questions about our projects, have suggestions to make or desire to help us in our efforts for such a worthy mission, we would be very pleased to hear from you. We are accessible by phone or email and look forward to being in touch with you.  

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