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THE HANGING GARDENS OF BABYLON
15 August till 26 September
This 'material arrangement' was part of the exhibition 'Schone Schijn' at temporary museum Heemskerk in the Netherlands. This work was developed in close collaboration with Jaap Velserboer and Ronald Tebra, Stichting Beeldende Kunst Manifestatie Heemskerk, The North Dutch water company, Car dealers Klok & Thissen and Poelenburg, Multimade Heemskerk, MIK meubel interieur Koevoets, and all the volunteers who helped to make this intervention possible.
The hanging gardens of Babylon was realized in the summer of 2010 and is a key work within my artistic development. I was asked to investigate the nature in a Euro 2000 protected reservation, a dune area nearby Heemskerk. The title for this work was inspired by a painting of Maerten van Heemskerck who was a Dutch portrait and religious painter and had depicted the hanging gardens of Babylon. A garden in the city that would be today Baghdad. This garden was made by Nebuchadnezzar to please his wife Amytis of Media who missed the nature in this big city. With my version I turned this idea around by bringing 'the city' inside this reserve.
In order to do so I invited the owners of resources that are active around this protected area to collaborate with me and bring their goods and activities inside this reserve. It was my aim to create a continuously changing environment with diverse activities.
By rearranging existing objects, like cars from the car boulevard, sea-containers from the industrial area and wooden boxes from the tulip bulb industry, bringing them together here and out of their original context gave rise to a heated debate between corporate, institutional and public actors concerning the parameters of this protected reserve. This discussion outlined an visualized the borders of my intervention and the actual artwork in this reserve.
As an artist I became aware of the potential to reactivate the role of public and contribute to the democratic process of (re)shaping and (re)thinking our everyday surroundings through visual interventions. Process based works which facilitate direct interaction and dialogue.
An online visual diary you can find here.
Two video's were made during the realisation of the project; Functor and The ode
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