About

20th October 2018 – 24th November 2018
Wednesday – Saturday:   12 – 6 pm

GO Gallery
Marnixstraat 127
1015 VK
Amsterdam

Visit GO Gallery online!

Smash the Narrative presents:

Alter-Nation 2018

A competition for international and local artists to address one of the most important and controversial issues of our day:

What is the meaning of nationality?

Over 100 artists from around the world have entered the competition and the judges have selected a shortlist of 21 who will appear in the exhibition. A winner will be chosen from these 21 and will be awarded a prize of €2,500 cash. A second prize will be awarded of €1,000 cash. Finally, visitors to the gallery will be invited to vote for their favourite piece, the creator of which will receive  €500 in art materials.

The exhibition includes works from countries such as Indonesia and Russia as well as works by more local artists. The exhibition displays a wide variety of mediums and techniques encompassing many different forms of painting and sculpture.

We hope that visitors to the gallery will not only enjoy the art, but feel provoked into discussing and questioning the related issues.

Why Smash the Narrative?

Narratives are the stories which we use to make sense of the world. But the same set of objective facts about a series of event will be interpreted as radically different stories by different groups of people. It is all too easy to become complacent and take the narratives we hear in the media or from the people around us at face value. The purpose of this project it to challenge popular narratives and encourage people to question the way they view the world.

This art prize is designed to encourage artists to examine evolving notions related to national identity in the current year and express them through their work in a manner that can have an impact on the the general public. Artists are encouraged to push the boundaries of discourse and create work that is leads to viewer to look at life in a way they had never considered before.

Contact

info@smashthenarrative.com

Exhibition Guide

① Anja Slijkhuis

Dutch

Cross-border Tulips

Acrylic

Acrylic painting on cotton canvas. The second one in my new series of classical tulips. Created on purpose of participating “Smash the narrative” / Theme “Alter-Nation” and just finished, June 2018.

Truly Dutch, that’s me. I am proud to be Dutch. And I just lov’ tulips!

Although tulips were from Turkey originally, they came to the Netherlands in the 17th century and people were crazy about them. So crazy, that tulips caused a Tulip Mania, unfortunately followed by a burst of the economic bubble.
Nevertheless, the tulip in all her beauty did survive this disaster very well because in the present, tulips are very important again for our small country: Dutch flowers are our biggest export product and tulips are part of them.
In 2018 I think every nation should be proud of their identity and should treasure traditional values and customs. Our national borders within Europe and within our precious world can protect and respect our origin.
We are however, each person and each country, in our own way, capable and responsible of sharing the best parts to the rest of the world. We can learn from each other, we have to reach out and touch. We are even bound up with cooperation to save our world by sustainable living and taking best care of our nature. Let’s use our internet and all other available modern tools and development to get a harmonious world!
My part in this, as a painter of tulips, is likewise. Tulips symbolize spring, new life, growth, hope, nature and beauty. In the Netherlands, after the grey, rainy and cold winter season, tulips promise a new beginning, a new season: “sun is coming, let’s celebrate!” They radiate joy, cheer and happiness. The red tulip even means “perfect love”. Tulips come in countless varieties and colours. Every year new tulip races are born.
I am very happy to be a tulip painter. I am free to create tulips in all colours and in all ways. I am enjoying to develop my painting skills by connecting and learning from other artists and painters around the world. Art is perfect to deploy globally. My tulips deliver gladness and cross-border love. I want to distribute with my tulip paintings joy, hope and bliss, all over the world!

About the artist

My name is Anja Slijkhuis, I am a Dutch tulip painter or colour blender, also called supplier of joy and bliss!

I have started painting classes in 2005, at Atelier du Jardin in Rotterdam. Next to them I am enjoying various workshops to develop my skills, for instance by using another medium, like oil painting or by painting portraits or other subjects instead of tulips. Nevertheless, tulips always will be my recurrent and never ending theme. I love to blow up my tulips and let the light shine in their petals. I want to perform their beauty and vibration, in all different colours and types. I want to feel their moves. Tulips represent spring, new life, hope, new chances, cheer and joy. I want to distribute my tulips all over the world, to share and bring their colours and gladness for every one! I have set up a small painting studio in the attic of my home. Classic concert music in the background inspires me best. My future goal consists among others of spreading my tulips around the world. One of these days I will start selling my art online. Painting is my perfect way of life: I just love tulips!

② Artist Duo A+B

Dutch/Swiss

False Flag of Freedom

Metal

Fales Flag of Freedom is a barb wire flag.

Don’t be fooled by the man who talks about his flag as a symbol of freedom

Every nation has a flag. The flag is a border, not freedom.

Every flag implies an “us and them”

There’s only one world

About the artists

A+B is Dutch artist Albert van Loon and Swiss/Dutch artist Beatrice Peter. Since an exhibition in

France in 2012 both artists work closely together. First next to their own practice. But after a duo exhibition in the beginning of 2015 the coöperation became more structural.

As an artist duo they create a.o. smaller objects, larger installations, interactive art projects and

performances. Second hand ready made materials are an important part of their work, but in the

cooperation they use also other materials like fabrics, ceramics and metal, and they got more

interested and involved in art with participation of the public.

③ Bang Huy Phan

Vietnamese

ID

Clay, Acrylic

Upon hearing the announcement of this Art Prize topic, shivers skittered down my spine.

It is a topic close to my heart, and very dear to me, and something I have wanted to express for years.

I have spent most of my life looking for a place to belong, but only finding additional confusion and disappointment in every location. It was only recently that I realised it is because I do not belong to any one place, and that what makes me who I am; I am from many places, strewn around the globe in a mixture of identities.

With that outlook in mind, I have encountered many people, many individuals, who have expressed similar thoughts and feelings: Just because they live in a specific place, does not mean they feel like they belong to it. They feel like something more.

This is my entry.

There is more depth to a person’s identity than just a finger print.

There are more nationalities a person can feel than just one.

This art displays a finger print with colours from the flags of all different nationalities.

This symbolises the richness of one person’s identity, and how we all spring from a multitude of influences.

I hope this work communicate a sense of that feelings to the viewer.

About the artist

My name is Bang,

I am Vietnamese but I spend most of my life in multiple countries. Holland is the latest and the longest country that i’ve reside in. After graduating art school here, I found a artist job that I was very passionate about, and it’s been like that until now.

④ Clara van den Hout

Dutch

Schemerkinderen, Children of the Dusk: Moon, Twy, Dawn, Nur,

65 thousand dollar girl.

Acrylic and oil on canvas

‘Twy’ is one of a series of portraits about albinism. In several African countries, e.g. Tanzania, their status has become an economical one, and the story goes that they are not people but ghosts, and that they bring happiness, wealth, health, etc and can heal you from aids. For that reason albinos have to fear for their lives. Their bodyparts and complete bodies are worth a lot of money, for the poor people who hunt them and the witch-doctors who keep the story alive.

To show the humanity of the albinos I try to ‘smash the narrative’. They are born in their native country between their native people and still they are not part of it. Superstition and tradition can change.

About the artist

Born in Leiden. Art lessons at Ars Aemulae Naturae. Went to Indonesia, followed art lessons by Indonesian artists. Followed in Surinam the Art Academy for 3 semesters. Came back to Leiden, Wageningen, Lelystad. Went to the Art Academy Huygens in Kampen (now ARTEZ Zwolle) and graduated in 1998. Live and work in Lelystad.

⑤ Daria Tyurina

Russian

Art Unites

Watercolor, wood, gypsum, rope, sackcloth

Everyone has red blood in his veins. Everyone feels pain, sorrow, happiness. No matter what color of skin do you have, what religion, nationality, sexual orientation, you still need to breathe, your blood is still red, your heart loves, your soul feels. But not only air, water and feelings unites people. Art also does. Beauty of real art unites all the people in our world. Art will save our world. So let us make art, not war.

Themes and feelings that are expressed in art are very familiar to anyone of us, no matter where we were born, no matter what nation do we have, we show same reaction on sad songs and beautiful paintings. Art unites us more than anything. We should not fight because of our dissimilarity or misunderstanding between us, because such things do not exist any more. Internet and technology help us to get much closer to each other more than even 20 years ago. We can understand any language, read any book, watch any movie from any place of this world. We can get to know each other wherever we are. We can travel and see everyone and everything with our own eyes. We can express our soul in art and everyone in this world will see it and will understand it, will find reflection of his own thoughts and feelings. So let’s make art, not war.

About the artist

Nothing is impossible. NO, better to say “EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE”. If you want something, just do it. This words are axiom of my life.

I am a mechanical engineer. My father was an engineer and since childhood I knew, that I also will be an engineer. But…I wanted to make art. Whole my life my imagination created different pictures, figures, shapes, ideas, but I stopped myself from making them, because: “it’s not the proper time”, “I have no resources”, “my parents/friends/husband will not like it” and so on. One day I realized that I was not happy, I have never been.

I asked myself a question “what will make me happy?” The answer was simple- Art. Since that day I learned different branches of art, participated in a lot of exhibitions, I was invited to enter three associations of artists, communicated with a lot of artists.

I have understood, there are no limits of imagination, of creation, no frames, where art can be squeezed. Art is everywhere, in every technique, style, in every feeling, in every breath. With my works (that I do using different techniques and materials) I want to show people, that art is near, it is available to everyone, who wants and needs it.

⑥ Frans de Winter

Dutch

Shelter

Sheet steel, aluminum blind rivets, ironmieie and lacquer.

The material and form in which it is bent and processed, tells about the embodiment of the personal limit of a human being in such a way that the armor does offer protection; But also no renewal permits. Unless the armor will be broken. This contradiction I want to make palpable.

This sculpture symbolizes a displaced person. What for example a refugee against his or her will by definition is. Except that the person has to deal with trauma done in the country of origin there is also a cultural and a language barrier. The typical red color on the inside of the sculpture is also typical of the inner side of many sea containers. It happens that refugees reach Europe through a sea container. A displaced person wears an armor in the mental sense of the word, which is very difficult to take of without help.

About the artist

After completing my education, a period followed that I became active as a theater technician in addition of making sculptures. Technically, this profession gave me a broader perspective as an artist. But it also gave me the possibility to grow as a person, because I worked a lot with foreign theatre companies and sometimes myself worked abroad in this capacity.

⑦ Grzegorz Tomczyk

Polish

They made me to feel Polish. Do they?

Combined process on canvas (oil, acrylic)

The main area of artistic interests of Grzegorz Tomczyk is widely understood destruction. His art is based around the concept where the idea behind the destruction is to be understood as an act of creation, where through the aggressive influences on the still matter – its fall and disintegration – reveals a new order and shows an entirely new approach to understanding. In case of Grzegorz Tomczyk’s works we are dealing with the deconstruction of the painting’s surface as perceived traditionally. He explores the borders searching for the very moment in which deconstruction becomes the creation or construction, however, not an attempted one, but an incidental one which occurs due to reaching the borders of destruction. The artist, along with traditional painting media, also uses glue, ripping apart, fraying, cutting, burning etc. In the end, it is an activity which balances on the verge of painting and not doing it at all. Grzegorz Tomczyk is still one of the few artists in Poland who work with the concept of the destruction as a process and as a tool of learning.

St Mary devotion is a characteristic feature of Polish Catholicism, deeply connected with patriotism. The way of thinking, sanctioned by a centuries-old tradition becomes a law that wants to control the morality and spiritual identity of the next generations of Poles. The picture is not a typical, beautiful figure of the Madonna. It is an inversion of a classical image, which becomes a symbol of changes in the context of Polish national identity. White and red – national colors, emphasize the strong relationship with the homeland. At the same time, they bring on an element of anxiety, danger and announce the upcoming changes. The image is incomplete, shows the divisions that reflect the emotions of many Poles. It is the representation of one of the most important pillars of the Polish national identity and at the same time it is not, because it does not represent the calm, trustful face of the mother – guardian. The image is broken, cracked, destructed. This disappointment, sorrow and bitterness is a symbol of wounded trust in the homeland. It is not enough to “just be” today. There is a need of something more, need to undergo changes that give the degraded values a new quality.

Work is a part of the cycle and was created in 2018. This one was painted for the Smash the Narrative – Art Prize 2018.

About the artist

Grzegorz Tomczyk was born on 12 March 1976 in Olsztyn, Poland. He is also known as: Greg Brat or GBRT (sometimes signs, exposes and publishes his work under pseudonyms). He studied painting at the Faculty of Arts at University of Maria Curie Sklodowska in Lublin and at the Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź. In June 2002, he defended his master’s thesis under the supervision of prof. Mikołaj Dawidziuk with an silkscreen annex made under the supervision of prof. Andrzej Smoczyński. Since 2008, he has been working as a teacher of Drawing and Painting at the School of Fine Arts in Lublin. From the moment of graduation, he remains professionally active, mainly focusing on the subject of destruction. Grzegorz Tomczyk has participated in many exhibitions, mainly in Poland.

⑧ Ilse Sjouke

Dutch

The incomprehensive matter of truth

Acrylic

All matter can be seen as a sphere with infinite perspectives. Therefore, all truths can all be true at the same time. No one can see the whole truth, thus unable to grasp a whole truth; even if we were bionic people who could be completely objective, nobody has the truth in his/her hands. From our own frame of reference, we can only see a subjective truth. Most people strive to confirm their own truth. Only a few try to explore the truth. Fortunately, more and more people are able to do that, through the internet, through the possibility to travel, because societies become more and more multicultural. Therefore people gain the slow realisation that the ultimate truth does not exist for people. That realisation can generate more tolerance and understanding, and that is already a big profit. Less hassle, less war, less hatred. On the other hand, there is also a group that therefore is firmly holding on to their own truths, which they increasingly try to confirm, establish, and fight for with like-minded people. Before man understands that the truth is incomprehensible to us as human beings, or perhaps does not even exist, since action creates reaction and something like truths / facts are constantly in motion, we will have already wronged each other a great deal.

To put this story into an image, I have chosen not to use nationalities to prevent any form of stereotypical thinking. I have therefore chosen teams, all in their own colour. For the representation of matter I have made a sphere as a puzzle in different colours with different pieces, and those pieces in the form of possible countries. I have put their frame of reference into the teams’ backpacks. Only the white team (white contains all colors 😉 ) does not have that , even if it is impossible for them to look at the truth fully objectively. The white team is in the plane, the helicopter and on the light blue puzzle piece. If you look closely, you will see that there are already different colours in the backpack of the white team figure on the light blue puzzle piece, colours from the puzzle pieces that have already been explored.

I think that none of us can see the objective truth, if it already existed, and that therefore no one has the ultimate truth. We all carry “truths” in us that we have learned in our upbringing, and the land we grew up in. With this work, I try to show that something like the truth does not exist and that we can all be right at the same time, that we are all human beings, and that if we are at least interested in all those other perspectives, we can be more tolerant to each other. So that we can see each other as humans, that is a fact. We are all human! Our humanity can transcend boundaries.

The full story is in the details

About the artist

I, Ilse Sjouke, am painter of philosophical, surrealistic, conceptual artworks revolving around all kinds of crazy things happening in this world that make me scratch my head and/or raise my eyebrows. For me art is a perfect way to express my feelings about the surreal realities that are a part of everyday human life and to show what everybody (unconsciously) already knows but maybe doesn’t want to see.

⑨ Jean-Philippe Paumier

French

Waterloo (a secret rancour)

Mixed media (latex & plastic)

The title of the artwork I’d like to propose is “Waterloo”. It consists in a life-size latex cast of a french “baguette” bread that has been firmly knotted.

By subjugating a great symbol of the french identity and pride, this project aims to deal on a humorous way with a so-called non-solved conflict or trauma in the history between France and England, which took place in Belgium. Being French allows me to accept and validate to a certain extent this symbol and in the same time to take a critical distance from it.

The tension between the aesthetic value of this object and its inner secret rancour is the key concept of this artwork.

About the artist

Born in 1980 in Tours (France)

Lives and works in Amsterdam

Graduated at the Art School of Rouen (France) (Master of Arts) and at the University Paris1-Sorbonne (Bachelor in History of Art).

⑩ Joël Bonk

Dutch

Wayang tanpa kulit (Shadow-puppet without skin)

Ink

Linocut-print of a torso and head in ‘écorché’ (flayed) anatomy. Showing the body without skin in black and white contrast.

The title refers to a traditional performance art of ‘shadow’ puppets from Indonesia, originally made from animal skin, called Wayang kulit. But this ‘wayang’ is without kulit (skin). Referring to immigrants that have left their homeland, and lost an important part of themselves. Or to put it in other words, they’ve shed their skin…

This lino-cut created for the ‘Smash the Narrative’ contest will be part of a (future) series of lino-cut’s that I will create to examine my own ancestry.

Raised by a father who immigrated at a young age not knowing the culture where he was from, I question what it means to have a (full) nationality. Considering it consists out of two (opposite) sides. On one hand being connected with your ancestry is beautiful. Having a traditional culture like customs, clothing, music and food is a good thing. On the other hand it sets us apart from others, and shuts out those who do not belong.

With this work I want to pay attention to those who have left their homeland, those who are trying to exist in a country where they are not familiar.

About the artist

Born in Zwolle, Joël Bonk (1980) started the Artez college in Visual Arts, halfway he went to study at The Willem de Kooning Academy where he graduated in 2011. He’s currently living and working in Rotterdam.

In his work, Joël investigates questions concerning personal, cultural and human identity. In every piece of work the starting point is his own body (what he calls ‘the blank canvas’). By using his own form, scale or appearance he tries to deepen his own points of view, and make an attempt to ‘cultivate’ a contemporary view of man.

⑪ Korneel Jeuken

Dutch

Sorry

Acrylic and watercolour pencil

Sorry is a series of portraits depicting some world leaders and one of the artist. The twelve laughing faces on colourful backgrounds are lined up in rows of four. Beneath each portrait the word ‘Sorry’ can be read. The twelve pieces together form one artwork.

The twelve A4 (21cm x 29,7cm) frames hold printed reproductions of originals that are twice as big (40cm x 60cm each, as seen on the provided photograph). Because of the maximum size of 100cm x 100cm for the artworks in this competition, I chose to make a reproduction that fits these measurements.

Sorry seems to be the hardest word. A true saying that goes for relationships, friendships and the work environment. Saying sorry for something you’ve said or done is often the best way to move on, even though you have to put your ego on the line. But is sorry also a word you can use on behalf of someone else? A co-worker, a parent or a child? Should we sometimes even apologize for the leaders of our countries? In current times the need to say sorry for being American, Dutch or Syrian, becomes more present, and for some even becomes part of a national identity?

The artist appears to be offering apologies on behalf of the people portrayed, but who is he to do so? Isn’t he just talking from his bubble? A villain for one could be a hero for another. Therefor this piece is made from a place of confusion, and a deep insecurity about the ability to get the right information and thus form proper judgement.

Isn’t the artist just saying sorry for making this work of art?

About the artist

Korneel Jeuken (The Netherlands, 1975) sees around in everyday life, cuts it, pastes it, reshapes it and adjusts its colours. A new, drawn reality of floating men and masked superchildren evolves.

Korneel’s work is not only rooted in urban-and comic art but also in life as a father and a normal human being moving around in the streets, through nature and on the internet. He isolates subjects from their surroundings to give them new meaning. Sometimes he uses his own kids as models, sometimes it’s their toys and sometimes it’s himself he portrays. Also world leaders, musicians and football players can pop up in Korneel’s work, be it in new versions of themselves. He reshapes the world around him to a hybrid of everydayness and madness.

Korneel Jeuken received his education at St. Joost Academy in Breda and Piet Zwart Institute Rotterdam, during which he also followed an exchange program with the Glasgow School of Arts. He exhibited his work in several venues. Korneel is a comic artist and cartoonist for Dutch newspaper De Gelderlander.

⑫ Marjolein Witte

Dutch

This is not a viper

Acrylic, pen

This is not a viper is a series of 18 small paintings of vipers with Arabic names. Each painting is sized 18 x 24 cm and comes with a wooden frame. The paintings can be hung in three rows of six.

As a follow-up I plan to enlarge the works as a poster and hang it up in public places. In this way, the work can serve as a moment of reflection for everyone who passes.

This is not a viper is a series of small paintings in which I research the source of collective fear. In today’s society, fear seems to have become commonplace, mainly for the unknown or for that which we have little control over. Fear is fuelled from the outside (media) and can grow to unreasonably large proportions. I examine the tension between the known and the unknown and the relationship between collective imagination, prejudices, fears and reality.

Based on a personal experience with disproportionate fear of poisonous snakes in Finland, I use the viper in this series as a metaphor for collective fear. I gave the vipers Arabic names. I have chosen the names for their beautiful meanings. By giving the snakes names, I try to emphasize the subject of fear. On the other hand, I try to humanise the snakes and give them personality, which could reduce anxiety.

Anthropomorphism is the assignment of human characteristics, emotions or intentions to non-human entities. It is considered an innate tendency of human psychology and can promote a social connection. If you are familiar with something, it is less scary. With this work I try to make the viewer aware of the pitfalls of collective thought.

About the artist

Marjolein Witte [1979] is a visual artist and lives and works in Utrecht. She studied Fine Art at the University of the Arts in Utrecht and graduated in 2002.She visualizes her ideas through installations, paintings, photographs and film. In her work she immerses herself in basic human needs, the physical manifestations of these needs and the potential tension that arises in relation to the environment. Territorial behavior is a recurring theme in her work. Marjolein exhibits her work in the Netherlands and abroad. She regularly participates in residencies and teaches art classes to adults.

⑬ Marlies van Veghel

Dutch

www

Sewing-thread and acrylic painted nails on canvas

This work is not finished, and probably never will be. It’s like culture(s): an ongoing process. Layer on layer.

If displayed, it must hang horizontally, using transparent threads, so the public can also look at the bottom of the work.

I chose thread because of its fragile nature. I used (besides the silver and gold) 41 different colors which I got from friends, who almost all got it from their moms and didn’t use it themselves. The nails and threads remind me of my parents. It’s like reconnecting with my childhood home. Being impatient and being someone who likes to throw with paint, this ongoing process with fragile threads is quite a challenge for me. The slow pass in which this artwork is created feels more like art, than is actually shown as a result on the canvas.

The bottom of “www” shows how cultures are erupted from earth. Their roots gained their color depending on the landscape.

Our cultures can only exist in the presence of other cultures. If there was only one culture, there would not be any. Although they differ from each other, they all consist of the same building blocks. This work shows the layers of culture(s). Culture rooted in the soil of its homeland and culture as layers of above that soil. The way we speak, our internal rhythm given and dictated by the landscape we live in. And on top of that, the social agreements and conventions we made.

Cultures are never static, always evolving, ‘on the move’ and fluid. As our landscape can change over many of years, so does our cultures. Not only by the change in landscape, but also by the look at, and sometimes touch, of other cultures.

There are no borders for cultures. With continuous exponential growing access to other cultures, by traveling and internet, we accelerate that process of change. Our roots in the soil are still changing slowly, but ‘above’ we are influenced, touched and inspired.

www does give us the feeling that we are looking at country borders, but it also shows us, it’s absolutely not about that. On the contrary. These borders are open. It’s like we are one big organism consisting of cells that interact and exchange. Ready to expand, to grow.

There are people that fear this (rapid) changes.. I like to look at it from a more optimistic point of view. That the exchange and mixing of our ‘cultural colors’ will create something larger than just the sum of those separate colors added up.

In time there will derive something out of this colorful web, that will exceed and transcend those colors. Hence the gold and silver lines.

About the artist

Autodidact artist living in Amsterdam. Grew up in the South of Holland and studied Theater at the University of Amsterdam.

Inspired by social structures, the building blocks of life, nature vs nurture, order in chaos and the beauty of ugly things and feelings.

Intrigued by what doesn’t meets the eye. Trying to make the invisible visible, with focus on the complexity of structure and layers.

Only started to make art ‘for a living’ recently.

I have two beautiful unconventional kids, who I’m raising by myself and who drive me crazy every day.

⑭ Maurice La Rooy

Dutch

Heimwee

Blown Glass & Found objects(discarded containers, metal components, keys etc.)

Heimwee (home-sick in German, translated directly, home pain) represents those people that have lost their homes and become home sick to a place that no longer exists. The series represents the hardships one goes through trying to find a place of belonging but never quite fitting in. Through the different components in each piece, for instance the key anchor, the balloon, or the mixed media construction, I am pointing out the dichotomy between the state of being harbored somewhere and not actually being rooted to the place you find yourself. The airships are constructed of found objects that have had their value and purpose removed, referencing someone who embarks on a journey with only their sole remaining possessions, which hold no more value to anyone but oneself.

In essence, Heimwee contemplates states of home sickness and being displaced. It explores feelings of hopelessness and not belonging, being completely uprooted and unaccepted, and does so while touching on a very common issue facing the world today.

Given today’s influx of refugees in Europe and how the world is reacting to this… Coming to the realization that everybody who loses their home and is forced to move to an other country as a victim of war must go through these feelings. Knowing the difficulties this has shown in modern day society this inspired me to make this work.

About the artist

Maurice La Rooy graduated from the Media College Amsterdam in 2012 with a degree in Graphic Arts.

Maurice has exhibited his work extensively, participating in 14 exhibitions in the Netherlands, Portugal, and Denmark. Among these, he took part in two, two person shows with Louis La Rooy, first in the Laerken Museum in Denmark in 2015 and then in the Galeria Municipal de Sao Bras in Portugal in 2015. In 2017 he had his first solo-show in Galeria Arttrakt in Poland.

In 2015, Maurice joined the team at Gent Glas in Ghent, Belgium, working together with John Moran artist and co-founder/operator at the studio. He has spent the last 3 years developing his sculpting and glass making abilities and splits his time between developing and creating his own work, free-lancing, and teaching all the introductory glassblowing classes at Gent Glas. Currently, Maurice works mainly in The Netherlands and Belgium.

Using a variety of materials in combination with glass, Maurice has developed a very distinctive style. His work is figurative in essence; portraying his opinions about and criticisms of modern day society, frequently returning to the imagery is death and the way we perceive it.

⑮ Pudji ‘Heytoms’ Utomo

Indonesian

Menjaga Tanah Air (Protecting the Land-Water or nation)

Aluminium foil ex-cigarette pack,pinewood & Oil.

This artwork is reflecting the love to the Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia (NKRI) or The United Country of Indonesian Republic as well as inspiring others about nationalism to protect our country which widely spread across Sabang until Merauke. Furthermore, this artwork is the embodiment of my gratefulness to the NKRI which resides on the green and fertile archipelago. Meanwhile, I explore antelopes as the imaginary figure. Should be noted, Antelope is the endangered mammals which have similar nature with the human: they live in community and interacts socially. Moreover, antelope is widely spread across the globe that in turn makes the animal as the global representations. Thus, I want to document its existence visually in my artwork as well as to become a medium in responding the global problem of trash. Meanwhile, as the recycle art, I try to recycle “grenjeng” or Aluminum foil of ex-cigarette packaging. Should be noted, the aluminum foil is one of the un-degradable trash which cannot easily decompose in soil or be burnt. Through this artwork I propose that the artist also have responsible to the environmental issue around them. They could contribute more by doing little things such as re-use and re-cycle the trash around them into meaningful art works: love our country, love our environment, and love our nature.

There are many forms of communities: from the smallest like a core family until a huge one like citizens in a country. Regardless the size, every community needs clear boundaries to keep their sovereignty and autonomy. As a house that need boundaries whether in the form of walls, fences, stakes, or any other sign, a country also need borders, which includes land and water and air, as a form of sovereignty. History has proven that conflict and war mostly caused by a disturbed sovereignty. As matter of fact, colonization is one of the great crimes, because it robs the sovereignty of other country. Could we imagine live in colonialism nowadays? Imagine that our homeland where we were born and lived is controlled by foreigners. Within this situation, the spirit of nationalism is usually born. Through this spirit, we can feel love and proud of our country, even willing to sacrifice for beloved homeland. In other words, for a country, a clear border is a must.

On the other hand, in connection with the age of bitcoin and internet, we can break the boundaries by creating a social community through social media, such as Facebook. The global Javanese community is fine example. The Javanese community in Suriname has created a community group in which they are able to reconnect with their relatives in Indonesia, especially those in Java. Although Javanese descendants of Suriname do not live in Java, they are able to communicate and stay in touch with the Javanese people in Java as a “families”.

About the artist

Pudji Utomo (Heytoms) is an independent visual artists graduated from Indonesia Institute of the Art, Yogyakarta. Heytoms works across diverse range of medium including installation, batik’s work, drawing, mixed media, found object, and recycle art. However, for recent years, Heytoms focuses his artwork on recycle art by exploring the cigarette’s aluminium foil packaging left-over (grenjeng) into a new form of art. Should be noted, Heytoms’ recycle arts manifest his ideal on sustainable environment as well as his statement on how an artist should be actively involved in conserving our surroundings.Environmental issues, both nature and social, become the source of his art work inspirations.

⑯ Sergii Grygoriev

Ukrainian

Without Visas!

Watercolor

Watercolor landscape with a view of the canal in Venice and a a monument to the Founders of Kiev: Brothers Kyi, Schek, Khoriv and their sister Lybid (English-Swan). This monument is considered a symbol of Ukraine’s capital. Decision on visa-free entry to Europe for Ukrainian citizens is dedicated.

The Internet is a lot of pictures with views of Venice. I too wanted to get involved somehow. But I live and work in Kyiv, and I love my city. In the year 2017 for citizens of Ukraine became reality enter Europe without visas. And in honor of this event, I decided to move to Europe, into the waters of the Canal of Venice is one of the symbols of the capital of Ukraine-monument to the founders of city: Brothers Kyi, Schek, Khoriv and their sister Lybid (English-Swan). The monument was erected in 1982 to the 1500-anniversary of the city of Kiev. The sculptor Vasily Boroday calls his creation “Hovering Swan.” Levitating Swan-Ukraine – visa-free regime with Europe!

About the artist

Born on 07/05/1959 in Bogoduhov, Ukraine

Live and work in Kyiv.

The world is reflected in each of us. These reflections affect all the five senses given to us by nature. Perceiving and analysing these impressions, each of us makes decisions on further actions – to yawn, to forget, to remember and so on. Such human actions become a part of the world reflected in everyone. The watercolour technique is bason on changes in the light reflected from the paper and passing through the thinnest layers of transparent paints. It is impossible to refream from a temptation: to depict the most impressive reflections of the world by means of watercolour reflections. This is why I have chosen the art of watercolour as a means of communication with the audience.

I believe that not sharing the beauty which is around us, the whole world is going to be just vicious misunderstanding. Awarded the “Golden Eagle Gold Medal” at the International Exhibition of Pictorial Art “The Flowering Spring”, New York, USA, ASA Art Gallery, 02-26/03/2011.

Participant and laureate of international competitions:

International Exhibitions-Competition of Modern Art “Artweek in Bulgaria” 28/03/201

⑰ Svetozara Alexandrova

Bulgarian

National Reserve

Jar, noodle, wooden shelf

The installation “National Reserve” consists of wall-shelf, jars and noodles with the shape of latin letters. Part of the noodle-letters are arranged behind the glass jar in the form of bulgarian national poems.

The Alphabet pasta is used for preparing a soup with education value for children. I used the latin letters to create a bulgarian national poems in a jar. By this way the poems are adapted for the bulgarian diaspora. The absence of the Cyrillic alphabet underlines the nostalgia for the Motherland which results in an “alternated” national belonging.

About the artist

Zara Alexandrova was born in Bulgaria. She graduated with a MA degree in painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Sofia. She lives and Works in Berlin. She has received several awards for her work, including the shareholder Art.Award Germany (2009) and the Gaudenz B.Ruf Award for New Bulgarian Art (2007).

Since 2000 the artist has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions among which: 2018 – XX Cerveira International Biennial, Vila Plana De Cerveira, PO, 2018 – Trophy Hunters, curated by Sheena Malone, Kunstraum Dada Post, Berlin, DE; 2017 – Fragmented Stories, Artist Union Berlin, Germany; 2016 – Per Anhalter, curated by Julia Brodauf, Kunsthalle am Hamburger Plaz, Berlin, Germany; 2015 – Art For Change, curated by Maria Vassileva, Sofia City Art Gallery, Bulgaria; 2014 – ECCE HOMO Charlemagne’s Legacy to Contemporary Art, Atelierhaus Aachen, Germany; 2010 – QUI VIVE?, Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Moscow, Russia, as well as in Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria, Denmark, Turkey, Serbia, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany and the USA.

⑱ Werner Aerssens

Belgian

Nationality

Acrylic

White flags are better.

(Work in progres)

Everybody is different. Why do we think that people born at a different location (continent, country, region or even village) differ more from each other. What attracts us to our national flag? While the most beautiful flag should be the white, it stands for surrender and peace.

Working together with my Syrian friend and artist made me aware of his trouble in finding a way in a new environment. Questions about his status of refugee artist with a past in one and future in another. It made me aware of the inhuman situations created by conflicts.

About the artist

Born in Ghent Belgium september 1951. Won his first drawing contest at the age of 6. First studied engineering, then Followed Art school at Sint Lucas Ghent. First exhibition at Pensmark Ghent in

1976. Many of my works are made in Croatia Several exhibitions in Croatia and Belgium. Member of CAT advisory board in hent. (Center for Artistic Talent). Second prize at “The Challenge” Rotterdam Hoogvliet 2015

⑲ Yutien Chang

Taiwanese

Iron cock

Ceramic

Using “Iron cock” as a metaphor for a traditional explication of a person who is stingy in today’s society, which is a culturally consonant trope as it is a staple of Chinese folklore, my sculptures show how our own compulsive behaviors align with those of animals.

My work examines these deep-seated fears. Using animals as a metaphor for how human interact in today’s society, which is a culturally consonant trope as it is a staple of Chinese folklore, my sculptures show how our own compulsive behaviors align with those of animals. In the West, there is a visual precedent for this in the work of comics and cartoons, which helps make my critique more universally accessible. I worry, that like animals, we are no longer are in control of our own destiny.

About the artist

I’m interested in examining the expectations that are put on us by society and our families when we are making the selections for our life choices and careers. I’m specifically attracted to evaluating the effects of succumbing to these expectations and in following the way that we tend to cope through escapism. Personally, I feel trapped, powerless, and strangled; I continually worry about my future and the direction that both the directive and addressed components of our society are moving towards.

⑳ Zoran Georgiev

Bulgarian

Flying Saucer

Traditional Bulgarian ceramic plate, levitation module, wooden display base

The work Flying Saucer consists of traditional Bulgarian ceramic plate, levitation module and wooden base. The levitation module, installed below the top of the wooden display base, is powered by electricity. Below the ceramic plate is integrated the second part of the module (the magnet disk) which keeps it floating and spinning.

In my work I used the common term “flying saucer” which applies to UFO. It combines electromagnetic technology with traditional Bulgarian ceramics. The result is a real Flying Saucer which refers to various aspects of the contemporary society like alienation, exoticism, tradition, estrangement etc.

About the artist

Zoran Georgiev (born in 1985 in Gevgelija, Macedonia) graduated with an MA in Painting from the National Art Academy in Sofia, Bulgaria. He lives and works in Berlin, Germany. His solo exhibitions have been held at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Sofia; Vaska Emanouilova Gallery, Sofia; Sariev Contemporary, Plovdiv; and 0GMS Gallery, Sofia. He has participated in numerous group exhibitions such as ); Personalized Traditions, Rakursi Gallery, Sofia (2018); Deep Maps, Dada Post Gallery, Berlin, DE (2018) I am…, Decumanus Gallery, Krk, HR (2018); Shifting Layers, City Art Gallery, Sofia, (2017); Translations in Context, KN Space for Art in Context, Berlin, DE (2017); Per Anhalter, Kunsthalle am Hamburgerplatz, Berlin (2016); Focus Bulgaria, Vienna Contemporary Art Fair (2015); Art for Change, City Art Gallery, Sofia (2015); Map of the New Art, Luciano Benneton Collection, Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Venice, IT (2015); Prehod For Sale, ICA Gallery, Sofia (2014); Young Art from CEE, Ringturm Gallery, Vienna, AT (2014); Transcending Cultures, Essl Museum, Vienna (2013-2014). He has received several awards including ESSL Art Award CEE 2013 and Young Visual Artists Award (BAZA), 2014.

 

㉑ Zuza Tokarska

Polish

Holy stamps

Graphic digital- stickers.

Sets of stricker stamps.

‘Catholic Content’ illustrating religious subjects in simple forms for children.

Catholic like my country.

Catholic faith is the main faith in my country – Poland. When I was little, I was very interested in this subject, because of my grandmother,…but today I treat it with a distance.

About the artist

First art high school – specialization- ceramique.

Now Academy of art and design in Poland in Wrocław – specialization graphic design and seriography!