Atelier Van Lieshout in the Submarine Wharf
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The Onderzeebootloods [Submarine Wharf]
The Onderzeebootloods is part of the former Rotterdam Dry dock Company (RDM) at Heijplaat. At the moment, the shed is being used as an external exhibition area by Museum Boijmans van Beuningen. Various contemporary artists will be featured in the coming period. Joep van Lieshout and his Atelier provide the spectacular première.
Atelier van Lieshout (AVL)
Joep van Lieshout (Ravenstein, 1963) studied at the Academy of Visual Arts in Rotterdam, the post-academy Ateliers 63 and La Villa Arson in Nice (France). In 1995 he started Atelier Van Lieshout (AVL): a multidisciplinary art practice encompassing installation, design, furniture and architecture. Joep van Lieshout leads a creative team of artists, designers and architects. AVL is located in the Rotterdam harbour area, just like tyhe Submarine Shed.
Sjarel Ex (1957) studied art history in Utrecht (1976-1983). He specialised in the early Dutch avant-garde and the artists and architects around the magazine De Stijl. In June 2004 Ex was appointed director of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam and since then has assumed final responsibility for the museum’s artistic and financial policies. Between 1988 and 2004, Ex was director of the Central Museum in Utrecht.
The sculpture shown here in the studio is called Cascade and was erected on 6 March 2010 on the Churchillplein in Rotterdam.
Exhibition in Aachen
From 13 September 2008 to 11 January 2009, the exhibition ‘Das Haus’ was held in the Ludwig Forum für Internationale Kunst in Aachen (Germany). This retrospective contained works by Joep van Lieshout and AVL dating from the 1980s until now.
Intervention # 7 ‘Apollo’
With Apollo, the German artist Olaf Nicolai (1962, Halle) has created a sculpture in the museum courtyard that is also a podium for performances. The circular, half-open pavilion forms the setting for a potential football arena, where the players’ movements are reflected in the mirrors that shoot up at regular intervals around the red playing field and generate a strobe-like effect. Design Bureau Thonik, which is responsible for the museum’s house style, created a design for the inner courtyard in collaboration with Nicolai, with the floor mural accentuating the interplay of lines and the reflection of ‘Apollo’. The work by Olaf Nicolai was recently acquired by the museum. This was made possible thanks to a contribution from the H + F Patronage of Han Nefkens.
The philosophy of Cradle-to-Cradle (C2C) is that all raw materials should be given a second life and a second function, so that no unusable pieces (waste) remain. Waste is food, is the core message. This concept for sustainable development is described by William McDonough and Michael Braungart in their book ‘Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the way we make things’ (2002). In order to ensure that future generations are not left with a depleted earth, many companies throughout the world have embraced the philosophy.
Part of the whole
AVL often works in series: sculptures are a part of a larger whole that illustrates the world of ideas of artist Joep van Lieshout. In 2005, the atelier developed SlaveCity: a complete concept for a self-supporting work camp. In includes, among other things, universities, an infrastructure and generators for providing energy.
From 29 May to 26 September 2010, the Onderzeebootloods [Submarine Wharf] in the Rotterdam harbour area, hosted an exhibition of the sculptures of Atelier van Lieshout. Themes such as autonomy, self-provision, power and economy were central in the exhibition Infernopolis. Room-filling artworks and a forest of sculptures were installed in the enormous shed covering almost 5000 m2.
The exceptionally efficient and ingenious systems developed by Atelier Van Lieshout give a new and repulsive insight into what it really means to be human. Atelier Van Lieshout, established in 1995 by Joep van Lieshout (1963), has achieved international recognition for its handmade polyester sculptures and installations that occupy the middle ground between art, architecture and design.
Office for non fiction storytelling - Victor Vroegindeweij