Istanbul Museum of Modern Art: Times Present Times Past

We visited the 10th Istanbul Biennial. On that occasion the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art had a temporary exhibition on the whole ground floor called “Times Present Times Past” with an overview of the 9 past Biennials.

The building itself is excellently located on the Bosphorus. I was mezmerized by the restaurant and bar: what a stunning view over the Bosphorus while having a lunch or simply an expresso (or Turkish Coffee).

What struck me most were four photo’s of Shirin Neshat from her series “Woman of Allah”.

Woman of Allah
One of the four exhibited
Photo © Shirin Neshat

As one of the most controversial of contemporary artists, Shirin Neshat will participate in the exhibition with her works from her series Women of Allah, which was part of the 4th İstanbul Biennial in 1995. In René Block’s biennial, Neshat’s work was introduced to the international community and widely discussed. The Iranian-American artist, who participated in the 4th, 5th and 8th İstanbul Biennials, was recognized internationally after her Women of Allah series, in which she used the images of Iranian revolutionary women who were ready to die for their convictions and combined a poetic expression with a problematical political content. Neshat left Iran in 1979 at the time of the Iranian revolution to resume her studies in the U.S.A. and had to live in exile until 1990. When she returned to her country after having spent 11 years in the U.S.A, she began questioning the role of women in the public sphere under the Islamic regime; in the series Women of Allah, which she produced between 1993 and 1997, she concentrated on issues relating to womens’ body, text and political action.

Immediately I associated these photos with the film Submission made by then controversial member of Dutch Parliament and current Bush think tank associate Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Dutch film maker Theo van Gogh, a distant relative of Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh who was murdered after the film was presented.
Last edited by GJE on December 7, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Amstelveen: Corneille in the Cobra Museum

Corneille
Photo: ANP/UNITED PHOTOS/ROBIN VAN LONKHUIJSEN
via AD

Amstelveen is a suburb of Amsterdam. It has the Cobra Museum, the only museum devoted to the Cobra Group of artists. Actually it should be spelled CoBrA, because its participants came from Copenhagen, Brussels and Amsterdam.

Corneille (Guillaume Corneille van Beverloo) is the only Cobra member still alive. Soon he’ll have the respectable age of 85. Here he is pictured with two of his paintings, Birds and Woman. As Corneille puts it: “They go perfectly together!”

This summer work of Corneille is exhibited under the title “Some of These Days” in the Cobra Museum.

Monet's Waterloo Bridge Temps Couvert fetches record

Monet's Waterloo Bridge Temps Couvert fetches record

Monet painted his Waterloo Bridge paintings during a stay in the London Savoy Hotel. This painting fetched a record at Christie’s of UK pnd 18 mio which is more than double the pre sale estimate.

From the Lot notes of Christie’s :

‘I adore London, it is a mass, an ensemble, and it is so simple. What I like most of all in London is the fog. How could English painters of the nineteenth century have painted its houses brick by brick? Those fellows painted bricks that they didn’t see, that they couldn’t see… I so love London! But I only like it in the winter… It is the fog that gives it its marvellous breadth. Its regular, massive blocks become grandiose in this mysterious cloak’ (Monet, quoted in J. House, ‘Visions of the Thames’, pp. 15-37, Monet’s London: Artists’ Reflections on the Thames 1859-1914, exh.cat., St. Petersburg, FL, 2005, p. 33).

When Monet arrived in London in 1899 for a family visit, he had not been to the British capital for some time. Checking into the relatively recently built Savoy Hotel, on the North bank of the Thames, he was amazed by the view, fascinated by the ever-shifting light effects on the river, and immediately embarked upon one of his most celebrated series of paintings, all showing essentially one of three motifs in London. These were the Houses of Parliament and, painted from his bedroom, Charing Cross Bridge and Waterloo Bridge. He focused more on the latter, as in Waterloo Bridge, temps couvert, perhaps enjoying the looping rhythm of the arches in comparison to the rigidity of the ever-right-angled Charing Cross Bridge. Another aspect that may have led to his preference of Waterloo Bridge as a theme was the fact that the sun, rising in the East, shone during the morning from behind it, providing an intriguing array of subtle light effects, a smog-bound chiaroscuro. It is a tribute to the visual power of Monet’s paintings of Waterloo Bridge that the majority are now in museum collections throughout the world, meaning that the appearance of Waterloo Bridge, temps couvert is a rarity, a factor that is emphasized by the sheer quality and beauty of this painting.

It was in order to see his son Michel, who was ostensibly in London to improve his English, that Monet arrived in 1899 with his wife Alice and his stepdaughter, Germaine Hosched̩. His immediate rapture on seeing the view from his room must have been to the chagrin of his family, for already during this stay he embarked upon the beginning of a campaign that would last half a decade. Canvas after canvas was used in order to capture the ever-changing view from his window, and the speed with which these view changed meant that he ended the first stay frustrated, and would returnРalone, and therefore presumably without the distractions of his familyРto the same hotel in 1900 and 1901.

Spaander celebrates 125th: Famous Guests and Art

Emma Wilhelmina Cruijff

Each Hotel has a guestbook.

Hotel Spaander of Volendam, a major Dutch tourist attraction, celebrates its 125th anniversary.

Eddy Guyt who was commissioned to write about its history, found 7 guestbooks in the attic with a wealth of material.

Some famous signatures can now be found online.
Emma was the queen mother of Wilhelmina and Johan Cruijff is a famous Dutch football (soccer in US) player.

Portret 1 Portret 2 Portret 4

Besides, Leendert Spaander, the first owner, had the habit of having all sorts of artists from all over the world staying in his hotel and paying him in kind for the stay. So the hotel has an extensive artcollection of over 1200 works of art.

Source: Algemeen Dagblad, 1st April 2006.