Layers in time: the archaeology of a life

Sometimes I look back on my life – one is allowed to do so when one is 50+ – and the thought pops up how a life consists of so many layers. Some very thick layers, other almost non-existent. If I imagine myself ‘hovering’ above my tangible life, all my worldly possessions, I think an archaeologist would have his or her hands full to discover what is beneath the most recent layers.

These layers in time of people’s lives, that was what I was reminded of when I received an invitation from Erik Fliek (photoblog) who participates in an exhibition in Hilversum, the Netherlands. Of course, since the distance between Suriname and the Netherlands is too far, I knew I wouldn’t be going. But because I know Erik from a great art project in Suriname a few years ago (one of the many things the archaelogist who will research my life will find), I read his invitation with close attention. It struck me how Erik has documented what now is left of the layered lives of Claudi and Fritz.

As part of the Art Hilversum 2016 seven artists get the opportunity to show their work at the Museum Hilversum (also on Facebook). The exhibition #mediakunst: NOW II is a group exhibition with Aldith Hunkar, Anne-Mari Ahola, Anna Visser, Bob Brobbel, Eric Blom, Erik Fliek (photoblog) and Vincent van der Geest. For more information about #mediakunst: NOW II please scroll down to the bottom.

In this exhibition Erik Fliek (photoblog) shows a series of photos, ‘House of Claudi’. In Erik Fliek’s own words:

‘House of Claudi’ shows the atmosphere and the layered memories that remain after a long life. Claudi, the aunt of a good friend, and now deceased, married Frits Kögl, a chemist from Munich, Germany, in 1931. In the same year he moves to Utrecht, the Netherlands. As a professor of organic chemistry, he teaches at the University of Utrecht and does research. He is also an amateur painter. After his early demise in 1959 Claudi continues living in the house and apparently prefers to keep the spirit of her deceased husband intact. Everywhere we see his tracks. Chemistry books on the shelf, paintings on the walls, the furniture …

When I make the pictures in 2013 it seems as if almost everything there is just as present as in 1959. Also, Claudi is not far away either. It is as if she has just gone out for a short while, to the bakery. In the end, Claudi’s living area was limited to the couch, the sofa to sleep on, and the table on which, a.o., medicines and a single note with important phone numbers. The garden has no longer been maintained. But with every visible detail the rich history of this family becomes more visible and clear.

I see this house as a concentrate, the reality thickened. With my camera I’m on private property and that feels somewhat uncomfortable, but also exciting. The only thing I can do is focus and put the shutter wide open.

The series has been photographed analog with a Horseman 970 (technical camera from 1968); the slides are in medium format (Fuji Velvia 50 asa, 6x9cm). The slides have been scanned and digitally processed and printed.

 

now II 2now II 3

now II 1

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A friend of Erik wrote a poem after seeing these photos.

de kamer is intact gebleven

ook al ben ik dood

de commode de japon

weten waar het schaartje ligt

ik kan er zo weer wonen

alles laten als het is

de tijd verstaan door stil te zijn

 

(Niek Satijn)

+++

the room has remained whole

even if I am dead

the highboy, the gown

knowing where the scissors is

I can live there once again

leaving everything as it is

understanding time by being silent

 

(Niek Satijn, translated by Marieke Visser)

+++

Erik Fliek visited Suriname and did a project with Remy Jungerman, they set up a graphic workshop for four weeks at the Nola Hatterman Art Academy. This was an exhcange workshop between the Federation of Visual Artists in Suriname (FVAS) and the Amsterdams Graphic Atelier (now known as AGALAB).

FVAS AGA Workshop
The brochure about the FVAS/AGA project

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13268390_1094569470581625_4066839064720032635_oWhat: #mediakunst: NOW II, a group exhibition with Aldith Hunkar, Anne-Mari Ahola, Anna Visser, Bob Brobbel, Eric Blom, Erik Fliek (photoblog) and Vincent van der Geest.

When: June 11-July 3, 2016. Tuesday-Sunday 11:00-17:00 hrs. Closed on Mondays

Where: Museum Hilversum (also on Facebook), Kerkbrink 6, 1211 BX Hilversum, the Netherlands. Tel. ++31 (0)35 – 5339601. E-mail info@museumhilversum.nl

Within the context of Art Hilversum 2016 seven artists got the opportunity to show their work at the Museum Hilversum. The exhibition #mediakunst: NOW II shows art at the intersection of art, technology and video. The artists’ diverse works and installations reflect on life and the environment.

A clip about the exhibition can be found here.

A flyer/catalog can be found here.

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Interesting Events:

What: Workshop graphic technique

When: June 18, 2016, 10:00 hrs

Where: Grafisch Atelier, Hilversum, the Netherlands

 

What: Dudok Festival

When: June 18, 2016, 19:30 hrs

Where: Hilversum, the Netherlands

 

What: Workshop graphic technique

When: June 22, 2016, 19:30 hrs

Where: Grafisch Atelier, Hilversum, the Netherlands

 

What: Workshop graphic technique

When: June 25, 2016, 10:00 hrs

Where: Grafisch Atelier, Hilversum, the Netherlands

 

What: Workshop Drawing in Open Air

When: June 25, 2016, 13:00 hrs

Where: Museum Hilversum (also on Facebook), Kerkbrink 6, 1211 BX Hilversum, the Netherlands. Tel. ++31 (0)35 – 5339601. E-mail info@museumhilversum.nl

 

What: Guide tour of #mediakunst: NOW II by Diana Kostman, drinks & concert!

When: June 26, 2016, 15:00 hrs

Where: Museum Hilversum (also on Facebook), Kerkbrink 6, 1211 BX Hilversum, the Netherlands. Tel. ++31 (0)35 – 5339601. E-mail info@museumhilversum.nl

 

What: Guided tour of #mediakunst: NOW II by  Stef van Breugel

When: July 3, 2016, 15:00 hrs

Where: Museum Hilversum (also on Facebook), Kerkbrink 6, 1211 BX Hilversum, the Netherlands. Tel. ++31 (0)35 – 5339601. E-mail info@museumhilversum.nl

TEXT Marieke Visser, Boxel, June 15, 2016

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