Exploring Exhibitions at Stedelijk Museum

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Taking over three years to complete, Förg raises essential questions in the matters of what constitutes an object’s traditional role and how it achieved the label of fixed meaning. Different rooms are displayed, each of them with an unique theme, where visitors can see the creativity of Förg and how he played with colors on canvas, but also shapes and different techniques. Ivana Šramková / The Amsterdammer

One of the many aspects Amsterdam is known for is its large selection of museums, over 60 different museums are set in this city of art and culture. Museumplein captures people’s attention with its open-space scenery and ‘IAmsterdam’ sign. Home to a wide range of museums, such as the exceptional Stedelijk Museum of modern and contemporary art, between 650 – 750 thousand people visit the museum per year.

Stedelijk Museum was founded in 1874 as part of a modernisation project and moved into its present, eye-capturing building, designed by Adriaan Willem Weissman between the years 1891-1895. The museum changes exhibitions frequently, and has many upcoming exhibitions such as “Friendly Good” by Lily Van Der Stokker, “Freedom of Movement” and many others.

“The preparation of the content of an exhibition can take between 6 months up to two years” says Marit Versantvoort of the Stedelijk press office. Furthermore, the choice of exhibition is a lengthy process. “Our curatorial staff develops the program, they scout and search, they are in contact with the international gallery- and museum world, and prepare plans. In the end the Head of Collections and the Director decide”, continues Versantvoort. Currently, the visitors have the opportunity to discover three noteworthy exhibitions: “Stedelijk Base”, “A Fragile Beauty”, and “Amsterdam, the Magic Center”.

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Stedelijk Base is a permanent installation with over 700 pieces that are organized based on the art historical movements, social themes and world known artists. The exhibition contained two parts: the first one is the ABN AMRO Gallery featuring artists such as Kazimir Malevich, Yves Klein, Piet Mondrian, Barnett Newman. The second part, VandenEnde Foundation Gallery is hosting many works as well, such as Jeff Koons, Anselm Kiefer, Maarten Baas. Ivana Šramková / The Amsterdammer

“Stedelijk Base” is an ongoing exhibition, highlighting art pieces from the Stedelijk Museum’s collection. The first part of the exhibition already offers a wide selection of around 700 pieces of artwork by artists, such as Kazimir Malevich, Piet Mondrian and many others. The design of the first part of the exhibition was developed by AMO/Rem Koolhaas, together with Federico Martelli, who created an unusual museum experience by forming separate sections of art based on different themes. The second part of the “Stedelijk Base” exhibitions was designed by Barbara Kruger and features art pieces from the 1980s until the present-day by artists, such as Jeff Koons and Anselm Kiefer. Overall, Stedelijk Base is a great first step of the museum tour as it provides an introduction into the history of modern art and design.

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“A fragile beauty” created by German artist Günther Förg is a modern art exhibition featured at Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam until 14 October. The exhibition presented the concept of instability between image and reality and showed a new meaning of this rebellious, complex artist. Ivana Šramková / The Amsterdammer

An evident minimalism art exhibition on display at the moment is the “A Fragile Beauty” by German artist Günther Förg. The exhibition is available for visitors to see from the 26th of May until the 14th of October 2018. “A Fragile Beauty” displays a combination of paintings, photographs and sculptures. Each room of the exhibition has a different theme, where visitors can see Förg playing with different colours, shapes and techniques. The exhibition is divided into various different parts, making each room stand on its own and compliment the exhibition as a whole.

Another eye-capturing exhibition is the “Amsterdam, the Magic Center”, focusing on the late 1960s. The exhibition provides an inside into a rebellious era, and the art, that was created in Amsterdam at that time. Designed by Bart Guldemond, the exhibition presents around 250 art pieces collected from the Stedelijk Museum, the Rijksmuseum and others. Guldemond presents eccentric artworks, such as human size insects and other extravagant installations.

During any part of the year, Stedelijk Museum offers a diversity of compelling exhibitions, exploring modern art and design. There is no doubt that Stedelijk is one of Amsterdam’s must-see museums that compels us to visit it more than once and appreciate its distinct exhibitions in the city.

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Amsterdam Gets a Taste of Indian Cuisine

For lovers of authentic food and great music, the Bollywood & Indian Food Festival was the place to be. Last Sunday, above 3000 gathered at Dok Amsterdam, one of the most famous festival locations in the city from 1pm to 11pm to celebrate the Indian culture. 

At the festival, people could discover the country’s gastronomy provided by 12 different independent food trucks. Some of the trucks experienced food shortages due to the large number of attendants. Apart from the large food demand, visitors were compelled to enjoy Indian music and visit a cinema section with classic Bollywood films. Later during the day, the event resulted in a party with live DJ acts that created a festive atmosphere, accompanied by a lot of dancing, singing and the enjoyment of drinks.

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Wife Areejh Amna Aamir, a student at the University of Amsterdam, Law Faculty and husband Ahmed Waseem, a Pakistani student of international business in HAN University of Applied Sciences in Arnhem are one of the main attractions of the festival. In their traditional costumes, the couple urges participants to taste their delicious Indian food. Waseem has always had a dream to expand his food to a new level in the Netherlands and not only. “I want to extend this business internationally”, said Waseem. Veronica Fontana/ Staff Photographer

Ahmad Waseem, an international business student at HAN University of Applied Sciences in Arnhem, originary from Pakistan, attended the event as a vendor with his wife Areejh Amna Aamir, a law student. “Since I am a student of business [sic] and my father owns a handicraft business since 1997, I want to extend this business internationally,” said Waseem. Like his father, Waseem dedicated to selling handicraft at the festival, named “Marvi handicrafts,” where visitors had the opportunity to purchase handmade items from Pakistan, such as wall hangings, cushion covers, tablemats and key chains, among others. The young student aims to introduce Pakistani handicrafts into the Dutch market, and start an online business.  “It is very hard, since I am a student of an Applied Sciences university. We have a very practical education,” he admits. “However, even though I need to fill my basic necessities and introduce a new business, I still managed to get in time to put this stall together.”

Amna Aamir, who helped her husband sell handicrafts during the day, admitted she enjoyed the event. “It was nice, I like that there are people from different nationalities, and that we can all enjoy the Bollywood culture,” she said. “In addition, [it] show[s] a side of our culture, that people mostly don’t see. The whole story behind all the pieces.”

Unlike the Pakistani couple, quite a few visitors complained and expressed their disappointment in the festival’s Facebook page. For instance, some people argued, that the size of the venue at the Dok Amsterdam was not spacious enough to fit the amount of people they received. Others believed, that the food, entrance fee and parking was too expensive. However, the organizators gladly shared their response to the complains: “As there is always room for improvement we have noted a few points which we will immediately look to improve in order to have provide you with an even greater experience of what [the festival] has to offer. So no more long lines, more food trucks and staff, an entrance for disabled people and only the best Indian foods, acts and surprises.”

Overall, the vendors and visitors seemed to enjoy the event regardless of the complains. “The staff was amazing and very cooperative. Everyone was kind and we had a wonderful time there,” said Amna Aamir.

The Amsterdam Museum and What Makes Amsterdam Unique

On June 17, the Amsterdam Museum opened its newest exhibition: “De Mooiste Stad,” or “The Most Beautiful City.” The gallery on a passageway has been turned into an exhibition about the wonders of the Dutch capital city.

“We all have a huge problem: we live in the most beautiful and nicest city in the world,” said the late mayor of Amsterdam, Eberhard van der Laan. The Dutch politician, who passed away in 2017 to lung cancer, was mayor of the city from 2010 until his death. During the last period of his life, van der Laan had been working on an exhibition about the city he loved so dearly. A selection of more than 80 paintings, pictures and objects from the collection of the Amsterdam Museum and the city’s archives portraits how the inhabitants of the city have dealt with as fast population growth throughout the years. Through the exhibition, the late mayor hoped to initiate a conversation on the city’s future. The decoration of the “The Most Beautiful City,” mainly done out of scaffolding, symbolizes that Amsterdam is never completely finished.

Van der Laan’s exhibit shows that living in such a place can indeed be a problem; an increase in residents and tourists is leading to a housing market that is on the verge of collapsing and to streets that are too crowded for anyone’s good. But these aren’t just contemporary problems. In “The Most Beautiful City,” the much-loved mayor demonstrates that issues such as high immigration numbers and tourism have been around for centuries in our country’s capital. For instance, the exposition demonstrates the issues with bad living conditions through the centuries; whole families would live in a damp basement because there was no affordable housing available. In addition, many problems are presented to the audience such as the social housing system intervention, making decent housing possible for even the poorest of the city’s inhabitants. As an eulogy of the city, its progressiveness is represented by remembering the first December 21, 2001, when a law to allow same-sex marriage was signed in the Netherlands for the first time in history. As a result, the exhibition pays homage to administrators of the city who had a great influence on its developments, including Monne de Miranda, Jan Schaefer and Floor Wibaut.

Many locals joined the exhibit. Among them, 63-year-old visitor Marion van der Kleij, who was born and raised in Amsterdam, admits the has suffered from a large crowd over the years. “Here, you can see that all these developments and expansions actually pay off,” she comforts herself. “It changes your perspective, to be more positive.” Like van der Kleij, her friend and fellow citizen of Amsterdam, Paulien van Gijn, 59, believes the exhibition taught her that people have been complaining about problems in the city for centuries. “Even years ago, people would write angry letters about fences that were in their way or expansion of the city,” van Gijn said. The two women admit being fans of former mayor Eberhard van der Laan. Van der Kleij. “The exhibition was quite moving,” van der Kleij adds, “I kept tearing up. I suppose it was a combination of the exhibition and the late mayor.”

The exposition is open to the public from 10am and 5pm every day until November 4. The display is the result of a partnership with the festival “We Make the City” that takes place from June 20 to June 24 across Amsterdam.

Avenue reporter at the Amsterdammer.

21-year-old Dutch girl with a passion for journalism, traveling and getting people to make her food. I’m also a Communication Science student at the University of Amsterdam and a lindy hop dancer -but I’m not that good at it quite yet.

The Game Continues: Searching for Space Invaders in Amsterdam

Since 1998, the French urban artist, Invader, started his mission of liberating art from the boundaries that museums and institutions set. The artist brings one of the most beloved games from the 80’s back to life and intends to transcend the game screen and release Space Invaders into the real world. His series of ceramic tiles have already “invaded” over 30 countries, with over 3,600 pieces spread in more than 70 cities, in which Amsterdam figures as one of the “victims.”

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Invader operates alone and has also inspired others to start similar projects, Space Invaders turning into an artistic movement. Raluca Dumitrache/ Staff Photographer

On his website, Invader explains his artistic process and how the game works. He focuses on populated urban areas and decorates each city with 20 to 50 tiles, distributed in one or more “invasion waves”, depending on how many times the artist visits the city.

Invader invading

Invader believes that the pixel characters are in strong correlation with the today’s world which is surrounded by technological developments. Thus, their names hold both a metaphoric and literal meaning, since they are actually invading spaces.

Invader works incognito, largely at night and masked, as urban art street is considered illegal. In search for artistic decontextualization, Invader hopes to “not only leave a print on the streets but also on the minds” (Invader-About, 2018).

Make it work

Invader gives each piece a score between 10 and 100, every city having their own score that can be seen on the Space Invaders map. Amsterdam has had one invasion wave in the summer of 1999, with 26 invaders and a score of 370 points. The FlashInvaders app can help you calculate your score and compare it with others internationally.

 

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FlashInvader App shows you the name and points for each piece. For example, piece 18 can be found on the intersection of Prinsengracht with Spiegelgracht. Raluca Dumitrache/ Staff Photographer

 

Visit their website for more: www.space-invaders.com/world/

Photographer at The Amsterdammer

Best 10 Places to Watch the 2018 FIFA World Cup

Tomorrow, the 2018 FIFA World Cup will begin- without the Dutch football team. In light of this news, some of the most iconic places in Amsterdam have decided not to continue their tradition of showing the tournament this year. Sadly, among them are Vondelpark3 and Radio 538 Oranjeplein, who showed the tournament in 2014 but will not do so now.

However, if you are a strong supporter of a different team, or simply one of the 3.2 billion viewers that gather every 4 years to watch the World Cup, The Amsterdammer is here to help! We propose 10 places that have confirmed the projection of the games in the Dutch capital.

Strandzuid Amsterdam

Starting from June 14, this place will show the games on the beach! The bar is located next to RAI Amsterdam, which makes it easy to reach. It is unique for its view and concept, which was built as a beach bar. You can enjoy the game while drinking a cold beer on the sand, making the most of those sunny days! For more information, visit their website.

Address: Europaplein 22, 1078 GZ Amsterdam

Amsterdam Roest

Amsterdam Roest is an industrial wasteland that was turned into a man-made beach. Famous among locals, this hidden gem will be displaying every game of this year’s FIFA World Cup. It is the perfect place to have a drink and share with your friends while you’re watching the games.

Address: Jacob Bontiusplaats 1, 1018 LL Amsterdam

Plan B

This billiard club owns 13 pool tables and 3 dartboards. If you’d like to play your own tournament while you drink and enjoy the game, then this is the place for you! They also have a smoking room for those particularly stressful fixtures. They will be displaying every game of this year’s FIFA World Cup. For more information, visit their website.

Address: Overtoom 209B, 1054 HT Amsterdam

Satellite Sports Café

Right at the heart of Leidseplein and neighbour to Amsterdam’s most famous coffeeshop, the Satellite Sports Café projects live sports on a daily basis. For this year’s FIFA World Cup, the café will be showing all the games. For more information, visit their website.

Address: Leidseplein 11, 1017 PS Amsterdam

Coco’s Outback

This Australian pub, located in Rembrandtplein, is famous among tourists and international students. Like Satellite Sports Café, they always project different live sports during the day. This year, you can expect every game to be projected in their screens. For more information, visit their website.

Address: 14, Thorbeckeplein 8, 1017 CS Amsterdam

Belushi’s

Near Dam Square, this bar is famous for having the longest Happy Hour of Amsterdam. During the FIFA World Cup, the games will be projected in 10 flat screen TVs inside and outside the bar! For more information, visit their website.

Address: Warmoesstraat 129, 1012 JA, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Big Shots Bar

If you’re looking for a small, chill bar to eat and drink while watching the game, the Big Shots Bar is your best bet. It is located in the Red Light District and has multiple TVs that will be displaying the tournament.

Address: Warmoesstraat 94, 1012 JH Amsterdam

Café De Zeemeeuw

Located at walking distance from Amsterdam Centraal, this Dutch café is famous for its friendly staff. They will be displaying every game of this year’s FIFA World Cup. Visit their website for more information.

Address: Zeedijk 102, 1012 BB Amsterdam

Players Bar

Located right next to the Dam Square, the Players Cafe is a large pub with a capacity of 450 people! Some pool tables are available for the customers and every game will be displayed.

Address: Warmoesstraat 170, Dam Square, 1012 JK Amsterdam

Westergasterras

The Westergasterras is at the heart of Westerpark, and has a terrace with the view of the water. This year, they will only be displaying the games played by the Belgian team on their big screen. They are expecting over 3,000 people, so they are yet to confirm the showcasing of the final.

Address: Klonneplein 4-6, 1014 DD Amsterdam

Founder and Editor-in-Chief

Isabel Bonnet is a 21-year-old second-year student in communication science at UvA. She is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Amsterdammer. Before its creation, she worked as a photo editor at the Independent Florida Alligator and did an internship at Le Monde.