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featured artist

don’t miss these

text Dara Colwell

For the duration of a long weekend, Amsterdam becomes an internationally oriented meeting place for artists, enthusiasts and professionals. Expect diverse presentations at over 40 galleries, museums, art institutions, theatres and art residencies, ranging from special exhibitions and performances to artist talks and more. Several major Amsterdam institutions traditionally get involved: this year, events are being organised at De Balie, the Oude Kerk and EYE Filmmuseum. Acclaimed art institutions such as the Rijksakademie and De Ateliers also throw open their doors to introduce visitors to the work being produced within.

‘I’m making a playground that brings out your inner child and lets him loose again.’



27-30 NOVEMBER Various locations

HERO DE JANEIRO (REAL NAME HERWIN POLDERMAN) Born: 10 January 1968 Talent: Street artist Hero de Janeiro (along with friend Ottograph) has been painting the Wijdesteeg alley near Dam square since May, turning it into a multicoloured gathering place and a growing hit with tourists. Hero has left his mark on Amsterdam before, pasting stencils of Karl Lagerfeld with a ghetto blaster and children’s characters Jip & Janneke on city walls. Sprayed on to the Wijdesteeg, Hero’s ad hoc city campaign ‘Amsterdam Loves You’ is aimed at bringing the city what it deserves (and what Hero doesn’t shy away from): attention.

10-29 NOVEMBER Dutch National Opera & Ballet Amstel 3



‘I’m proud of this city and want to make it number one again in the street-art scene. In Amsterdam, there has always been the freedom to “just do it” – so we have. The idea was born at a party at Peter Klashorst gallery, where I was asked to paint puzzle pieces on the wall, and then I took over the alley. What’s great about the Wijdesteeg is it’s open to everyone. With this art, we’re trying to shake people awake. The city has become like an amusement park for yuppies – it’s all about consumerism rather than art – but it doesn’t have to be this way. There’s nothing wrong with earning money, but there’s definitely more to life. I think it’s important for Amsterdam to have such places and you can measure it directly because thousands of people have come here to see the Wijdesteeg. People are delighted and they thank me every day.’


LOHENGRIN The Dutch National Opera continues its exploration of great Wagner operas. This romantic fairy-tale work was initially staged by director Pierre Audi in 2002, with particular acclaim for artist Jannis Kounellis’s decor and the costumes by Angelo Figus. In the four lead roles are Nikolai Schukoff, making his DNO debut as Lohengrin; Juliane Banse, ’wonderfully subtle’ as Elsa; Russian baritone Yvgeny Nikitin, dubbed ‘physically, vocally, a complete star’ by the Independent and also making his DNO debut as Telramund; and Michaela Schuster as Ortrud, following on from his acclaimed roles in Elektra and Götter-dämmerung. Along with Bill Viola and Gary Hill, Tony Oursler (b.1957) is one of the best known of the so-called ‘second generation’ of video artists. For his first Dutch solo exhibition in 20 years, Amsterdam’s Oude Kerk sees the born-and-bred New Yorker unleash an alternative iconoclasm, taking advantage of the sacred characteristics of the Oude Kerk in order to create a blend of historical and contemporary perspectives on ethereal, parallel worlds. ‘In the Oude Kerk,’ says Oursler, ‘you see the traces of cultural change. Through the use of projections and interactivity I transform the historical space into a mirror for our present time.’

26 NOVEMBER-31 MARCH 2015 Oude Kerk, Oudekerksplein

A-mag – Amsterdam Magazine: Vol 2, No. 6  

The November/December 2014 issue of A-mag, Amsterdam’s colourful city magazine.

A-mag – Amsterdam Magazine: Vol 2, No. 6  

The November/December 2014 issue of A-mag, Amsterdam’s colourful city magazine.