July 19–October 5, 2009
Special Exhibitions Gallery, third floor
Artists from all over the world came to Amsterdam in the 1960s and 1970s, attracted by innovative museums, an up-and-coming gallery scene, progressive sociopolitical policies, and the city itself, whose history had been shaped by successive waves of emigration and immigration. While some, like New York–born artist Lawrence Weiner, established residences in the Dutch capital, others visited the city regularly, and many had their first solo exhibitions outside their home countries. Conversely, some of the most promising Dutch artists left the Netherlands to study abroad. Bas Jan Ader and Ger van Elk settled in Los Angeles, quickly assimilating themselves into the nascent Conceptual art scene and frequently making connections in their work between their new home and their culture of origin. Most of the works in this exhibition were shown in Amsterdam shortly after their creation, and together demonstrated that sculpture was no longer bound to a physical form but could exist as ideas in the mind of the viewer. The exhibition celebrates a major gift from the directors of Art & Project, the leading Amsterdam gallery for Conceptual art, with which the ten selected artists were closely associated.
In & Out of Amsterdam: Travels in Conceptual Art, 1960–1976 is organized by Christophe Cherix, Curator, Department of Prints and Illustrated Books.