press release

opening 19th april 2008

Since the start of their collaboration in 1994 Dutch artists Jeroen de Rijke (1970 - 2006) and Willem de Rooij (b. 1969) have produced a select corpus of 35mm and 16mm films, photographs, objects, installations and texts. Their collaborative work analyses the conventions of presentation and representation, and explores the areas of tension between sociopolitical and autonomous image production.

This exhibition is conceived as the counterpart to a twin exhibition in K21, Düsseldorf, which took place from December 2007 to April 2008. Each of these two shows highlights a different selection of de Rijke / de Rooij's works from the last ten years, as well as documentation and source material.

De Rijke / de Rooij's exhibitions were always carefully staged and could be seen as autonomous installations. Through partial reconstruction within both exhibitions at K21 and MAMbo of previous presentations - such as Dutch Pavilion, Venice Biennale; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Magazin4, Bregenz - multiple conceptual and visual echoes make for a deeper understanding of de Rijke / de Rooij's artistic program.

The exhibition at K21 centered on films Mandarin Ducks (2005) and The Point of Departure (2002), the slide projection Orange (2004) and various photographic and installation pieces, as the new installation produced with the help of the Cineteca di Bologna and inspired by Pier Paolo Pasolini's Il fiore delle mille e una notte (1974). The exhibition at MAMbo centers on a hugely different selection of works: the film Mandarin Ducks - the only work shared by the two exhibitions - the 16mm film I'm Coming Home in Forty Days (1997), the 35mm film Bantar Gebang (2000), a number of different photographic works and the installation Bouquet IV (2005). Mandarin Ducks is a highly stylized conversation piece, in which ten characters negotiate physical and emotional space within a modernist domestic interior. Bantar Gebang juxtaposes the visual splendor of a tropical sunset over an Indonesian slum with the daily reality of that same location. I'm Coming Home in Forty Days, a circumnavigation of an iceberg in Greenland, oscillates between abstraction and realistic depiction of the landscape. Bouquet IV reflects on the photographic translation from color into black and white. In the show at MAMbo a part of the exhibition Together (Magazin4, Bregenz, 2005) is also reconstructed, and two creations of Dutch fashion designer Fong-Leng (b. 1938) are shown together for the first time: Luipaard and its modern replica Luipaard II. Originating from two different public collections in the Netherlands, this duo of extravagant golden dresses tells a self-reflexive tale about the liaison between exoticism and economy, society life and culture in 1970s Amsterdam. Both dresses also relate to two installations Willem de Rooij produced for Galerie Chantal Crousel in Paris (2006) and Galerie Daniel Buchholz in Cologne (2007).

Intersecting with the show at K21 and creating new or unexpected encounters that oscillate between expository and documentary framework, the peculiar selection of de Rijke / de Rooij's works presented at MAMbo shapes a complex doppelganger entity, which avoid the features and the very idea of a survey show.

Jeroen de Rijke / Willem de Rooij is a joint project by K21 Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen and MAMbo Museo d'Arte Moderna di Bologna. The two independent yet connected exhibitions present a comprehensive overview of the work of Jeroen de Rijke and Willem de Rooij, which is accompanied by a new exhibition catalogue (published by Snoeck, Köln) with new texts by Sabeth Buchmann, Willem de Rooij, Ann Goldstein, Julian Heynen, Gianfranco Maraniello and Andrea Viliani.

only in german

Jeroen de Rijke / Willem de Rooij
de Rijke / de Rooij