16 Jun – 1 Jul 2007


Papa Adama (Sawadogo), Anthon Astrom, Blanchefleur Brienesse, Camila Cisneros Cabada, Yann Cleary, Avantia Damberg, Lena Von Dhren, Erika Erre, Zoro Feigl, Mauricio Freyre Mendieta, Henriikka Harkonen, Mostafa Heravi, Aldo Kroese, Sonja Magnusdottir, Seda Manavoglu, Sachi Miyachi, Lisette Olsthoorn, Bojana Panevska, Ido Shalmon, Wouter van der Sluijs, Phillip Tonda Heide, Mauri Valdevino Mendes, Marcus Wiln, Sam Yazdapanna Ardekani
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The graduation show is a time when beginning artists want nothing better than to present their work individually. Which seems to make perfect sense but there are good reasons and circumstances for doing quite the opposite: the art students have known each other, and each other’s work, for several years and have worked in the same location for some time prior to the graduation show so there is time to develop a powerful tightly curated presentation. Moreover, in the first few years after graduation, fledgling artists will predominantly show their work in group exhibitions so getting some practice at this stage will come in handy.

Then there’s always the question of how long the visual arts will continue to focus on individual artists as strongly as it has up to now. Admittedly, the art market is still based on making and exploiting names, although the need for, and the need to emphasise, collaboration between artists is distinctly visible in many places. In Munich, Stephan Dillimuth’s graduation class conceived a presentation, a sort of Gothic interior, where it was impossible to decipher the authorship of the individual candidates. For me, this was the most intriguing and refreshing image in contemporary art since Hirschhorn.   After the annual graduation exhibitions, diverse institutions cherry-pick from the enormous pool of recent graduates. For the above reasons, this year W139 decided to invite the Formerly Audio Visual department (VAV) of the Rietveld Academie to present their graduation work in a group exhibition at the Warmoesstraat.    

The ties between the Rietveld Academie, especially the VAV and W139, are longstanding and very close. This fact and the meeting with Bernd Trasberger, appointed curator of the VAV graduation presentation, mean that I’m very much looking forward to this exhibition (and its production).      

Gijs Frieling, Director W139

With thanks to:
Gemeente Amsterdam, Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Ministerie van OCW, VSBfonds