Magic

All you need is a pop-up book and a projector to create this magical, little world on its own…

The Ice Book from Davy and Kristin McGuire on Vimeo. Via

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Louis Reith is one to watch

“Who?” you might think. Louis is a Dutch illustrator and designer who creates simple yet beautiful artwork. He creates geometrical ink designs, mostly black but sometimes with some subtle use of colour too. One fact about his work is that he works on old book covers. This is something that makes me, as a bibliophile (yes, that is a word), even more enthusiastic! You can check his work at his website, or his better updated Flickr account.  

Spaceball by (c) Louis Reith

Spaceball by (c) Louis Reith

Last week, Louis won an art competition organised by Nike. Five artists were asked to design a piece to support the Dutch National Soccer Team during the World Cup, below you’ll find Louis’entry. People were asked to vote via this website and Louis’ work won deservingly. His piece of art is printed on a huge canvas and will be shown on the center spot during the first friendly match of  The Netherlands (vs. Ghana) on the 1st of June. 

(c) Louis Reith for the Nike Art Challenge 'Bloed Oranje'

(c) Louis Reith for the Nike Art Challenge 'Bloed Oranje'

Who said documentaries are boring?

Last week I was lucky enough to see two really interesting documentaries in Amsterdam. I have to admit that I was late for both of them thanks to my wonderful planning, but I’ve seen more than enough to know they are worth watching.

The first and most amazing was the documentary ‘Let it Ride’ about the legendary Craig Kelly. The documentary shows Craig, his view on snowboarding and life in general. What impressed me the most was the footage of Craig snowboarding in Iran, the first foreign snowboarder ever to do this. While watching you get a hint of what ultimate freedom he must feel when boarding of the most incredible mountains. To me, and I’m a person who doesn’t really like to watch sports in general, it was just amazing. What even made it more magical was the music used to support the documentary, with Björk’s Hyperballad at the end as an absolute favourite. I’ve seen most of the documentary, but I will definitely go back to see it all. If you happen to be in Amsterdam , you should check it out at FOAM. It’s part of a bigger exhibition curated by Ari Marcoupolis – viewable until 16th of June 2010.

Art & Copy Poster

The second documentary I saw was ‘Art & Copy’, which is about advertising and inspiration. On their website they say the following: “it reveals the work and wisdom of some of the most influential advertising creatives of our time — people who’ve profoundly impacted our culture, yet are virtually unknown outside their industry.”  They show all the classics (unfortunately mostly US-based) and also have old footage that gives you almost a Mad Men feeling. I found it interesting to see the development of the advertising industry and how some of the well-known people in advertising think about their work and the industry as whole. If you like advertising in any way, make sure you go to SMART Project Space where the documentary will air until March 30th 2010.

Recession art

Recession / Recessione, a nonexcisting exhibition

Recession / Recessione - A Nonexistent Exhibition

Although probably no artist likes to admit this, one needs money to be able to create art. Recession is therefore bad news for art. A design studio in Italy came up with a creative way of showcasing art when money is low with “Recession / Recessione – A Nonexistent Exhibition“.
According to the creators, this book (or actually more a catalogue) is a great example of an exhibition that will never take place due to budget limitations. It’s a nonexistent exhibition, you can create one yourself in your own space with the art provided.

Recession / Recessione - A Nonexistent Exhibition

Recession / Recessione - A Nonexistent Exhibition

Between September and November 2009, 35 artists worldwide were asked to interpret the R word through texts, images, artwork or music. Their work is combined in a 1 kg book and an audio CD, which you can amazingly buy for free (you only pay shipping costs). Best idea ever! I ordered mine last week and thanks the lovely people at the studio I received it within days. The ones I liked best were Maxime Buechi and Slavs & Tartars’ “The Hustle”, Camille Vivier’s “Candle II”, Mark Borthwick’s romantic picture “If were pioneer’s”, the design of Paul Bouden’s “Bring it on” and the imaginary mixtape full of miserable songs (“The light at the end of a tunnel…is a train”) by Dirty Sound System. Go order one yourself here, there are only 800 copies available and I have the feeling they are going fast!

Affordable Art Fair Amsterdam 2009

Affordable Art Fair AmsterdamAround two years ago I wrote about affordable art at the Secret Show of Royal College of Art in London. Little did I know Amsterdam had it’s own initiative of bringing the (modern) arts to a larger group of people. It’s called ‘The Affordable Art Fair Amsterdam‘ and it shows contemporary art at a beautiful location. Most important aspect though is the fact that all art displayed ranges between 100 and 5000 EUR.

Last year I couldn’t go, but when a photographer friend invited me to join him last Thursday I of course couldn’t say no. It was incredibly busy, so the whole experience of checking out some fantastic work was made difficult. I also have to say that not all stands were as impressing. Work of some people that were worth noting down (personal opinion all the way) were Ronald Ceuppens (BE, graphic artist, very scenic), Marcel Hoes (NL, photographer, unfortunately his fantastic Amsterdam pictures ar not on his website), Russel West (UK, love the technique, colours and texture) and Fiona Morley (UK, great combination of wire and canvas, hard to capture on picture).

SOHO VI  45cm x 75cm Oil on Wire on Board by Russel West

SOHO VI by ©Russell West (45cm x 75cm Oil on Wire on Board)

'Untitled' by ©Fiona Morley (100cm x 100cm, Wire and Emulsion on Canvas)

'Untitled' by ©Fiona Morley (100cm x 100cm, Wire and Emulsion on Canvas)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Main question remains of course whether I brought a piece of art back home? Unfortunately I didn’t, but I will go back next year and look for something that fits both my taste and budget :-)

Doel – the saddest place in Belgium

Silent protest on the Doel streets

Silent protest on the Doel streets

Earlier this year I went to the free film festival Pluk de Nacht. One night I was there they showed a short documentary about Doel (“Doel leeft” by Tom Fassaert). It’s a little village in Belgium waiting to be demolished completely for the expansion of the Antwerp port. The documentary showed the last inhabitants that were unable or unwilling to move. Pretty depressing and surreal situation which the documentary showed perfectly.

Last weekend I went to Antwerp and via Twitter I was reminded about Doel. Took the car and in the middle of nowhere we found the town. Even more empty than in the documentary, it was a true ghost town. The one nice thing about it was the abundance of (street) art. Luckily I had my DSLR with me so in the short time I was there I quickly shot some pictures. Via a friend I found a great Flickr set of someone who has been there the same day I was. It’s still unclear when the town will be wiped off the map, but if you want to see it for yourself you’ll have to hurry up.