dinsdag 15 februari 2011

Young Masters @ Auction

This weekend I went to the Young Masters @ auction at Roodkapje organized by Ongekend. The art auction was organized for relatively unknown artists that were given a place to show off what they can do. It was my very first auction and I was pretty excited! It’s a fast paced, highly competitive business, but only when people are willing to spent some real money off course. The bids on the first couple of artworks went pretty slowly and it sort of seemed like there wasn’t a lot of interest. But soon the bids went up to 600 and 700 euros and money started rolling. The artworks were projected on a screen one by one, when all of a sudden there was a really creepy sound welling up from another room, a low, dark, drone like sound. No one seemed to notice or pay attention to it and I sort of started to freak out a bit. I looked around for impending doom or people suddenly freezing, but nothing of the sort seemed to happen. The noise stopped and I decided I was probably crazy. It's always better to just ignore these things.
There were 45 artists showing their work, and it was kind of a shame not all of them got to sell their work, but as the auctioneer said, people were being very ‘Dutch’ in their bids, which meant most were looking for cheap buys. I was a tiny bit disappointed by this ‘dream small’ mentality of the country I live in, but it was still a really cool concept and lots of people got to show their work. Besides watching the auction, I took some pictures and even found out where the creepy, doomy noise came from!

The Auctioneers

Thijs van Gasteren had brought three installations which all looked very intricate and also reminded me a bit of scary alien sentinels. They were really cool to just stare at and try to figure out what they did and how he made them work.

Nano Microscoop
Personal Computer

I also liked Nurzehra Ulukaya ceramic work, especially the Deer and an artwork called Abeyance, which hung from the ceiling right above the audience.

Untitled (Deer)
Abeyance

Erik Overmeire en Dennis de Bel made two artworks which have their basis in one art discipline that gets translated to another. The one called One Frame is an image which they used as the ‘source’ for a soundfragment, which got printed onto only 4 cd’s. Very arty indeed! Their other work worked the other way around. They used sound to generate the image and made it into a lightobject. The work was put in a half-lit room, which really showed how pretty it was.

One Second
One Frame

Sigrún Gudmundsdóttir, an Icelandic artist who now lives in Rotterdam had brought an installation called Two a Day, which really catered to my organized mind. She also brought a ‘statue’ called By the Dozen, which was a woman covered in empty medicine strips. She looked like a futuristic shiny woman, which is off course a good thing!

Two a Day
By the Dozen (in the back)

Rotganzen, an art collective from Rotterdam, brought a huge fluorescent lollypop with the word hexamethylphosphoramide on it (it’s a mildly toxic liquid). It comes from a series called Gangredine Consumptus.

Hexamethylphosphoramide
What war once was (Pocket edition)

The scary noise I heard apparently came from this big black box made by Daniel Maalman. It’s a soundproof, one-person, completely dark box which gives you a sound experience. The low bassy sounds already frightened me enough, so getting the full experience didn’t seem like a great plan to me, but others told me it was pretty cool and intense.

The Blackbox

When I left to get my coat I was in for one more art-experience. The girls hanging everyone’s coat were from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie concocting a artwork of their own. It was called Coat Check and involved them putting on everyone’s coat and taking a picture of it next to a sign with the person’s name on it. The images were projected and repeated on a screen, but in case you missed them wearing your jacket, they also printed the picture and pinned it to your coat. It was sort of an invasion of privacy, but I thought it was a really fun idea to take something ‘intimate’ and turn it into something public. And it was great that you get a picture of it!

Coat check wearing my coat

As said, I liked the auction and it was a great opportunity for a lot of new artists, but I would love to visit a real auction with really known artists and see how that works. If you know any I could go to, please let me know!

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