This Biennial will be on view at the Museum Rijswijk near The Hague until 26 October 2014. Now in its 10th edition, 25 artists were selected for the show – four each from the US and Canada, three each from France and Germany, two each from the UK and South Korea and one each from Argentina, Belgium, Japan, South Africa and Switzerland. The (Dutch) panel of judges consisted of Peter & Pat Gentenaar-Torley, Bob Matthijsen, Marian Smit, Jan Eric Visser and Anne Kloosterboer. The latter is the curator in charge at the Museum Rijswijk, and in view of the general cutbacks in the Dutch cultural sector it is probably due to her tireless efforts that the Paper and Textile Biennials are still flourishing.
Over the course of the past 20 years, more than 200 paper artists were able to show their work in the beautiful old museum building (including a brand new wing and an idyllic garden). Anne Kloosterboer has managed to give each Paper Biennial its own character. In this edition, paper as such appears to have become the main theme; the messages and materials have become inextricably linked. Aside from handmade paper and manipulations of industrially produced paper (crumpling, folding, cutting, tearing, crushing and transforming back into pulp) there is a remarkable number of pieces using printed paper from books, magazines or newspapers. In the curator’s eyes, these relate to the fact that printed paper is becoming less important in our digital age. Artists either work to counter this phenomenon or, conversely, focus on the process of destruction by using printed paper as their basic material, transforming it through their art.
As usual, there were a few surprises: the fine paper cuts by Lucrezia Bieler, the very precise- looking portraits made of layered paper strips by Nathalie Boutté and the highly expressive animal-human sculptures by Mélanie Bourlon. If you have the opportunity to visit the exhibition, don’t miss out; for those unable to visit, a catalogue is available by mail order from the museum. Art historian Frank van der Ploeg features each artist in a highly readable contribution accompanied by several images (Dutch- English text, ISBN/EAN 978-90-821807-1-8, € 19.75 plus postage).
Address: Museum Rijswijk, Herenstraat 67, 2282 BR Rijswijk, Netherlands; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; website: http://www.museumrijswijk.nl/papier2014x01NED.html
1) The 2012 Paper Biennial was reviewed in Textile Forum 3/2012, page 20
2) The 2015 Textile Biennial will be judged in November (the deadline expired on 31 August 2014; the exhibition will run from 9 May 2015 until late September 2015). On 15 May 2015, participants of the 17th ETN Conference in Leiden are invited to attend a special tour (see programme)