Something About Us
Daan van Golden, Magali Reus, Maria Roosen, Evelyn Taocheng Wang
1 May – 12 June 2021

The group exhibition Something About Us starts from how we get acquainted with or get to know things. Think of words and images that are repeated in order for us to see and understand them in a certain way. As a result, we have formed caricatures in our thinking: a certain conception of what something should look like. The artists in this group exhibition change and manipulate these images and circumstances we surround ourselves with almost every day. By taking things out of context, a distance is created from the object, giving way to a different meaning or allowing the function to change in form.

In the early 1960s, Daan van Golden created his most well-known works: paintings with meticulously painted reproductions of motifs he found on everyday objects such as wrapping paper. From the 1980s he started to use details from works by Henri Matisse and Jackson Pollock, among others. When he created new work for his first exhibition in Japan in 50 years’ time, he cut out the most beautiful images from double-printed proof-sheets from his recent book and decided to make prints out of them. Study HM Tokyo (2012) shows the work Blauwe studio naar Matisse, from 1982. At the same time, the flower motif can be recognized from an untitled work from 1964 that also appears on Mitsukoshi Tokyo (2012). In this way Van Golden interweaved his own past and present, but also the sources that formed the basis of those earlier works. 

Like Van Golden, Magali Reus starts from existing objects from everyday life. In her works shown in the gallery, objects such as a hat, a bucket, a no-parking traffic sign can be recognized. Her interventions can be seen as "rewriting" what is materially possible for an object. Reus uses our emotional and physical connection with objects to allow us to pause, to think and to become more aware of the material environment in which we find ourselves.

Hangend kannen paar (2010) by Maria Roosen is a cross between a body, container, cup of a flower and vulva. Due to the handles, the wavy shapes are reminiscent of jugs. However, they do not contain any liquid; would it be something else? Roosen often describes her works as objects intended to convey feelings, as translations of emotions that communicate in a direct and tactile way; objects that trigger thoughts about growth, bloom, fertility, love and death.

In Evelyn Taocheng Wang’s work Icy Pants in Harbor, she describes an anecdote that many in the Netherlands will recognize: on a sunny day you find yourself in a sudden rain shower which leaves you soaked down to your underpants. In her work, Wang highlights subjects, stories and objects that we often pass by without thought. We think we already know them and therefore they often spark little interest in us. We do not realize how conditioned we are and how many of these experiences and circumstances shape and sustain our identity and culture. It is precisely by highlighting or underlining these parts that Wang is able to ask your attention, sometimes for simple anecdotes such as Icy Pants in Harbor, but also on topics that go beyond that. What does it mean to be shaped by an identity and culture without being aware of it and what does this mean for someone else who cannot directly relate to it?