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In the exhibition [S]ELECTED, all the candidates nominated for the Gerrit Rietveld Academie Awards 2012 are being shown to the public. During the Rietveld Graduation Exhibition last July, a professional external jury made a selection from the latest crop of artists and designers graduating from the academy in Amsterdam. [S]ELECTED displays contemporary and multidisciplinary work. For example, experimental meta-cinema goes hand in hand with a clothing design that uses bluff as handicraft, and an object comparable to Lady Gaga’s footwear, in which aesthetics, ergonomics and prosthesis merge in a bizarre choreography. This year’s jury members were artist Barbara Visser, curator Xander Karskens, architect Ronald Rietveld and graphic designer Hansje van Halem. In addition to the nominations for visual works, the nominated theses can also be viewed. The jury members for these were Jeroen Boomgaard, lector in Art and Public Space, Sven Lütticken, lecturer in Contemporary Art at the VU University and Saskia van der Kroef, editor-in-chief of Metropolis M. The historical context in which [S]ELECTED takes place is unique; in WWII Castrum Peregrini was a hiding place where, in secrecy, young people maintained their intellectual freedom and developed their personal talents through art. The secret artistic breeding ground of the past becomes the context for the young talent of today and produces interesting dialogues. Three of the nominated students won a prize, which includes a sum of money and a four-month residency in an Amsterdam studio. Through the prizes, the Gerrit Rietveld Academie wants to support its alumni at the start of their career.



post@mariekeberghuis.nl www.mariekeberghuis.nl Department: Image and Language Nominee: Thesis ‘Pharmakon: De magie van het schrift’ [artist statement] In her work, Marieke Berghuis researches the space between structuring mental concepts, such as language and legal systems, and the material world. She seeks to investigate the tension between objectified rituals that organise the world and events, and a normative outcome - and by which forces this outcome is influenced.

[abstract thesis]



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‘Pharmakon: De magie van het schrift’ is a thesis about the connection between the material world and the world of writing. Pharmakon investigates this question in two parts: the effect symbolic signs have on us, and the effect of the manual activity of writing itself on the writer.



THESIS REPORT [jury] Jeroen Boomgaard, Sven Lütticken, Saskia van der Kroef Marieke Bergman’s thesis researches the boundaries between drawing and writing. She accompanies her research with her personal story of scribbling in a courtroom. This brought on disruption and confusion, because she wasn’t making a drawing that resembled anything, but she wasn’t writing anything down in shorthand either. Marieke has collected a lot of material for this thesis and she deals with it in a fresh, maybe somewhat naive way. But the montage with her own personal story makes it a very interesting and exciting thesis.


info@saraglahn.com www.saraglahn.com Department: Photography Nominee: Fine Arts ‘My Dad is an Artist 2012’, ‘Double Portraits’, ‘Graduations’ [not shown] [artist statement] Sara works primarily with photography, text and installation. She investigates how her relationships with others can be reflected in the people she encounters and for the viewers who will regard her work. She’s interested in meetings that occur on a direct or indirect basis and the dialogue that ensues. From this, she also looks for when art happens and the context in which it occurs.

‘My Dad is an Artist 2012’ “I worked with my father on this project for a period of one month in the spring. He trained to become an artist in the 1980s, but it never became his main line of work. In 2012, I asked him to come up with some new work. The installation consists of his old portfolio pages, original sculptures from the 1980s, his new sculptures and models of sculptures, and photographs, which are my reflection of his work. I curated his and mine objects. Additionally, a one-hour soundtrack is playing a conversation between the two of us concerning the process of the project. It was recorded during one of the final days of the period in which we were working together.”

‘Double Portraits’ “In my work, ‘Double Portraits’, I photographed women who were unknown to each other before the photo shoot. Indeed, most of them were unknown to me too until I met them in my studio. I was interested in the connection that could arise between the models in the process of photographing and the connection and distance between them and me as the photographer.”

‘Graduations’ [not shown] “This booklet consists of portrait photographs selected from an archive at the Photography Department of the Rietveld Academy. The archive consists of the faces and works of former Rietveld students from between 1974 and 1978. Along with the photographs, there is a set of fictional texts., These concern ’scenes’ and ‘monologues’, which are self-reflections on the idea of graduating and the period that follows.”

JURY REPORT [jury] Xander Karskens, Barbara Visser The work of Sara is a whole made out of three different components, which make the presentation multi-layered and kaleidoscopic. She shows and re-interprets work made in the 1980s by her father. There is a series of double portraits on display and she carefully compiled a booklet from material from the archive of the department of photo-graphy. By including works of her father, Sara始s work becomes intimate and vulnerable. In the experience of the viewer these components tell a story of time and people. Documentary and installation come together and address in a subtle way the subject of authorship. The jury compliments the work for it始s melancholy without showing a trace of sentimentality.


www.lukashoffmann.info Department: VAV Nominee: Fine Arts ‘Promise not to fulfill’ Video, 28:00 min.

“Listening to a song (could it be Bruce Springsteen or Tom Petty), one is walking down the road. There is a dead cat lying between the street and the ditch. The left hand is filming the right hand as it uses a stick to prod the dead body away from the street, into the landscape. One is watching the screen and one is feeling the stick - vice versa - poking the mortis of reality. A picture, a stick, a prosthetic tool You, the spectator, and I, another, would probably not be able to agree whether it was Tom Petty or Bruce Springsteen playing at the moment the dead body was found and approached. But perhaps the two of us could agree for a moment about the image we have in mind as we think about the picture in the screen: a frame that is organising a hand holding a stick poking the body of a cat. A picture indexing the approach of a person relating to a lifeless object. A picture resembling the attempt of agency between an entity and actuality. Not only in the Medusan moment of this photograph but also in its off-frame – where, in my opinion, Tom Petty was playing – does the field of my interest lie: a possibility of narrative in what we agreed to call reality. A sailing trip, thwarted, leaving and then landing back at the Canary Islands, cross-referenced with a movie, ‘Dead Calm’. This is the bone structure of the film, which opens with the building of a set, or, to be precise, of a rather ad hoc ship – the ship being a dummy model of sorts. A suave voice-over narrates the breakdown of the journey – one sole voice for two points of view, of both makers of the film.

“The floating microcosm starts functioning again” – and there’s a cut, and transposition, from hand-held camera shots on set and restless montage, to an actors’ scene, steadily shot on HD. A sail gets ripped in a storm, and there’s the thinking, before it becomes real, of a lifeboat. The fabrication of a lifeboat, some buoy. There is dread, and calm. There’s GPS and satellite, but just as much, the relief of a port of call. “Time stood still in the boat, being back to its normal state of chaos, and everything was almost burning underneath the sun. In search of shade I gradually diverged from the false reality of the harbor and the boat. From there I understood that I was not prepared to offer my body in a fight with no benefits.” So it is not about sailing, or boats, really. Or, that is simply one dimension. Existential and, by extension, philosophical impulses get stirred. Game theory seems too simplistic an abstraction. Even so, issues of authority, decision-making and trust become a lived experience. And are reflected in a pool of infinities as vast as the ocean. “In my resignation I couldn’t come up with any better place to be, but I felt pushed to leave this spot. I was afraid that one of them would come back and would try to pull me into a conversation, about how each one of them felt right now and why things came as they did. The frustration that we weren’t able to get it together was making me mad. I couldn’t accept that compromises would get us nowhere and that the boat was too small to fit our three egos.”

JURY REPORT [jury] Xander Karskens, Barbara Visser The jury is astonished by the film of Lukas. The work can be seen as traditional, in the sense that it is a narrative film, but at the same time the jury considers it to be highly experimental in it始s way of handling conventions. In one of the first shots, the film set is being built in the gym of the Rietveld Academie so the viewer immediately knows it is a construct and at the same time believes the reality the film portrays. This has to do with the professionalism of the filmmaking: a well written script, very convincingly in acting, nicely shot, good quality of sound and lightning. Lukas shows to have a firm hold on the language of film and creates meta cinema in which the artificial and realistic seemingly blend without effort.


christopher@holzor.com www.holzor.com Department: VAV Nominee: Thesis ‘Finding Reality in Hyperreality’ [artist statement] Christopher Holloran (1987) is UK born artist and filmmaker from the north of England. He studied graphic design at Leeds Met University until he dropped out after receiving an offer to study at the Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. Christopher’s subsequent travels in China and America during his studies influenced his artistic direction and focused his attention on hyperreality and sub-narrative communication in the moving image. He graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Audio Visual in 2012 and everybody clapped.

[abstract thesis] In this thesis, I will test the relationship between reality and hyperreality by exploring specific prototypical instances that each one flaunts. I plan to scrutinise the most permeable interactions practically, philosophically and scientifically to see if there truly is a reality amongst the deviating pomp of the hyper and if the real object is equal only to itself in a mirror.

Visual representation of the thesis ‘Finding Reality in Hyperreality’ Video, 05:30:00 min A Pre-recorded projection of all moving image references from the thesis including scrolling ticker of the entire text itself. The projection take place in one sitting on Castrvm Peregini’s third floor, also known during the Nazi occupation as the ‘hiding place’ or ‘safe house’. A floor dedicated to books, music and reality dispelling media of the time; it seemed an opportune collusion between the suspended reality of the past and the hyperreality of the present. With these two worlds in a savage embrace, one can gauge the unsettling comfort the two fit together amidst the incongruities of the projections mixed with the anachronistic environment. Perhaps they are not too dissimilar, perhaps context trumps content.

THESIS REPORT [jury] Jeroen Boomgaard, Sven Lßtticken, Saskia van der Kroef Christopher Holloran’s thesis researches the reality of hyper-reality and illusions of reality. Holloran is a good writer in that he gives good descriptions and gets to the essence of the subject. He gives plenty of great and fresh examples. The thesis however at times gets too broad and general, and therefore the jury would like to remind Holloran for his future writings that sometimes less is more.


elisabethleerssen@gmail.com www.elisabethleerssen.com Department: TXT (Textile) Nominee: Design ‘Man-Without-Tool’ Alpaca wool, naturally tanned leather, wood, ceramics. Nominee: Thesis ‘Use Your Ignorance’

[artist statement] By creating productions on her own for the Dutch textile industry, by the publication of a book she designed herself, and by participating at the MMXII Fashion Show, Elisabeth Leerssen has demonstrated that different disciplines can easily flow together. This is also how she derives her strength and how she explored in detail the notion of working outside a discipline in her thesis entitled, ‘Why Can’t I Use My Ignorance’. With two nominations for the GRA Awards in the Applied Arts and Thesis categories, we can see how abstract thoughts and concept can crystallise in both design and a theoretical work. The young designer has decided to approach a subject from a different angle every time, and sees the future in the blurring of well-defined disciplines. It means she is happy to be at the cutting edge of fashion, design, and theory.

‘Man-Without-Tool’ “Carrying your coal-stained-garments concealed in a briefcase - slowly trans-forming them into objects of desire.” “In my work, ‘Man-Without-Tool’, I examine the current position of men as creators. The homo faber – man the creator: who and what is he, in fact? The specialised individual in the slow evolution of technologies. From tool-using-man, to man-withouttool. Did man lose his tools with the rise of the industrial revolution? He not only lost his identity as a creator, but also his image as a man. His superfluous tools disappeared, and have slowly been transformed into objects of desire. Carrying an axe, having changed from a tool to a status symbol. I looked specifically at miners in Limburg, who struggle underground with coal, and status.”

Underground, dust accumulates in areas where nothing moves. Here, white is a sign of visibility, but also bears dirt and blackness. Above ground, on the other hand, there is friction wherever movement occurs, the traces of bodies that slide past each other. Friction between the working body and identity, friction between shame and masculinity. “Feverishly we see him looking for his grip on masculinity.� This investigation resulted in a series of items of clothing and objects that approximate the emptiness after this movement; getting dirty as an identity. My own recreated realism, where craft is deployed as a bluff.

The knitted prints that can be seen on the jerseys came about after a scrum session with a Rugby team, in which members of both teams create an interlocking formation with their bodies in order to gain possession of the ball. The Rugby players were given uniforms, sprinkled with pigment. This led to the direct creation of a negative of a series of movements. The jerseys were then digitised so that the patterns that had been made could be converted into a knitting pattern. Gradually, there resulted replicas of the items of clothing that were created from the friction between the interwoven bodies. Bluff was now being deployed as a craft.

JURY REPORT [jury] Hansje van Halem, Ronald Rietveld The impressiveness of the work of Elisabeth lies in the contradiction it carries within. What seems to be a random stain turns out to be the result of a intensely precise work of weaving. Because of it始s subtleness and surprise, the jury feels like being seduced into nominating. And gladly does so.

[abstract thesis] There are different ways of looking out, of looking for new perspectives. Perhaps my fascination with the ancient explorers and their narrations lies not so much in narrative, but in their approach. I am not interested in revisiting their voyages, but rather on commencing my own. To adopt their naive, primitive, and subjective way of seeing the world, in the new encounters they made. Making many assumptions on the way, and never finding the entire truth; or any truth for that matter. This narrative of transition; it is a fictive journey. Finding yourself opposite an unknown phenomenon, as in the explorers’ journals: the abundance, yet incompleteness. Many truths, many ideas, and many more assumptions. Diving into different disciplines, using them all; perhaps taking pieces that were not meant for me. I’m not looking for the strength of singularities, but for humble pluralities.

THESIS REPORT [jury] Jeroen Boomgaard, Sven L端tticken, Saskia van der Kroef Leerssen provided the jury with a beautifully designed thesis that was also content wise very interesting. In her thesis Elisabeth researches how ignorance can be made productive. She takes herself as a starting point and arrives at original and lively references from different disciplines and gives her own creative examples. It is a search that ends up again at Elisabeth Leerssen herself. At this point the thesis would require a little more self-reflection and more precise use of language, but it remains one of the best.


annanavndrup@gmail.com www.annanavndrup.wordpress.com Department: Architectural Design Winner: Design ‘Space is a matter’ Elastic tread, MDF, pinewood construction [artist statement] The encounter between art and human is central in her work. Thematically, she works with orientation and the translation of objects and movements. Her projects often result in interactive installations and sculptures.

‘Space is a matter’ “We tend to perceive space as the emptiness between matter. Like the blank space between letters or the air between walls. Through the installation entitled ‘Space is a Matter’, I have tried to enhance the fact that in-between space has a body of its own - a visible and tangible atmosphere that affects the movements of one’s body. In the space of lines the in-between space becomes dominant as orientation and sense of depth are distorted.”

JURY REPORT [jury] Hansje van Halem, Ronald Rietveld The work of Anna combines thorough research and elegant simplicity in a visually powerful installation. It is an experience which relates directly to the body. As one enters the installation, which is placed in a corridor-like space, the white elastic threads of which it is made slowly close in. In order to move on, the viewer is invited to create space by moving apart the elastics with use of the hands, arms, legs and feet. In this way, the surrounding touches in a literal way upon the physical space the body requires. It succeeds in appealing to all senses. The work始s poetry lies in it being an architectural experience which renders space- an intangible notion as such- tangible.


laura@asterisk.ee Department: Graphic Design Winner: Thesis ‘The Erratic Life of Texts Made Public’ [artist statement] Laura Pappa is a young graphic designer from Estonia who graduated from the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2010 and from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in 2012. She is currently continuing her studies at the Werkplaats Typografie in Arnhem. Her current subjects of interest include publishing, the distribution of books and the notion of sharing.

[abstract thesis] The Erratic Life of Texts Made Public takes a look at what happens to books after they’ve been sent out to the world, and in what forms can they continue their existence. For this a narrative of sorts has been put into practice where at each step texts are subject to more and more deformation and alienation from the original content. This curated collection of books is subject to a close study through examining the different ways material can be treated and made use of, weighing the ups and downs of it and defining the core of these projects.

THESIS REPORT [jury] Jeroen Boomgaard, Sven Lütticken, Saskia van der Kroef ‘The Erratic Life of Texts Made Public’ is an outstanding thesis because it is well written, has a good outline and gives original examples. The thesis describes and researches everything that can happen with a text, which takes flight from Laura Pappa’s own discipline of graphic design. The jury only found one blind spot in the thesis in that it doesn’t question what the – sometimes devastating - effect of the graphic designer him/herself can be on a text. Still it is a remarkable thesis in that it is one of the few that really shows an independent manner of thinking and a train of thought that is taken to its utter consequences.


raeder.jacob@gmail.com www.jacobraeder.com Department: Ceramics Winner: Fine Arts ‘The Slow Process / an artist is a craftsman’ Video, 6:49 min. ‘What’s best left unspoken’ Wood, Plexi-Glass Graphic design and photography by Nora Halpern and Rémy Alban Valton

“Other people have written and spoken far more eloquently about the about the virtues of making and humbleness of material, so I can skip most of that. But you should know, that I am an unabashed Clay-nerd. and that I make things, and sometimes they have a function, but often times they don’t. At the moment, the “memory of an experience” has been fueling the engine of my creativity, namely, the action of a memory, the “before and after” moments that are irreversible. The tension in those moments, the snap of a sprung mousetrap, is what find myself gorging on and incorporating; taking into my body of work.”

JURY REPORT [jury] Xander Karskens, Barbara Visser The strength of Jacobʼs work is the combining of elements that do not seem to fit together in the first place, like growing garden cress on ceramic pottery [not shown] or filming a mild form of self mutilation while repeating in a matra-like way ʻthe artist is a crafstmanʼ. The aesthetics of the work are directly related to daily matters and give expression to a radical playfulness. It shows a heart for experiment and sense of detail. Performance, craftmanship and fun come together in a way that supersedes existing categories. The work goes itʼs own way. The jury is convinced by itʼs intuitive freedom and notes that the lust for making is contagious.


leanievandervyver@gmail.com cargocollective.com/leanie Department: DesignLAB Nominee: Design ‘Scary Beautiful’ Leather, Carbon fibre [artist statement] Leanie van der Vyver (South Africa) has recently moved back to her home in Cape Town, after studying at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie. She is influenced by her personal frustrations with modern society. Even after working in fashion for 7 years, and therefor being well aware of the manipulation images in fashion suffer for a perfect result , she still compares herself to them and other current beauty ideals. Leanie’s frustration with her own inability to over come these feelings of inadequacy was what brought Scary Beautiful in to fruition.

‘Scary Beautiful’ “Humans are playing God by physically and metaphorically perfecting themselves. Beauty is currently at an all time climax, allowing this project to explore what lies beyond perfection. Scary Beautiful challenges current beauty ideals by inflicting an unexpected new beauty standard.”

JURY REPORT [jury] Hansje van Halem, Ronald Rietveld The object created by Leanie expands the concept of a shoe into multiple new meanings. The beautifully made leather object is accompanied by a video registration of a girl wearing it. One observes the design forcing the wearer to develop new ways of walking, leaning forward while refinding a painfully fragile balance. The jury applauds the way aesthetics, ergonomics and prothesis merge into an awkward choreo-graphy. The craftsmanship and strong conceptual way of designing also come across in another work, a ceramic tea set in which reference is made to a building in South Africa [not shown]. Leanie succeeds in translating political consciousness into form and is considered by the jury to be a meaningful future designer.

[S]ELECTED RIETVELDACADEMIE.NL & CASTRUMPEREGRINI.ORG Special thanks to all participants, the jury, Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Castrum Peregrini, Ro Hagers, Beamsystems, Samsung.


Šby Public Rietveld 2012

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