Het HEM Chapter 3HREE: ‘What is important now is to recover our senses’

Tunnel vision, literally…

Written by Craig Berry
Former Junior Designer at VBAT

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Het HEM CHAPTER 3HREE – Maarten Spruyt

Chapter 3HREE is, as you might guess from the name, the third exhibition on display at Het HEM; this time curated by the Dutch stylist and art director, Maarten Spruyt. This exhibition brings 27 artist’s work together, displayed throughout the vast Het HEM building and specifically using its architecture to create an experiential setting and to “challenge visitors to appeal to their capacity for introspection”.

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Maarten Spruyt (photograph by Koen Hauser)

“Already at a young age, Spruyt was able to convey moods in spherical images. After studying fashion design at Akademie Vogue in Amsterdam, he became one of the first professional stylists in the Dutch fashion industry. Spruyt’s first major exhibition, Woman by, was made together with designer Roosje Klap in the Centraal Museum Utrecht (2003). This was followed by exhibitions in leading Dutch museums and institutions, including the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, Kunstmuseum Den Haag.”

Some artists included in this exhibition are John Gerrard, Geert Mul, Noa Ginigier, Christie van der Haak, Tessel Braam and Cyprien Gaillard.

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John Gerrard – Flag (2015) | Nile (2015) Simulation on LED Panel
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Geert Mul – Natureally (2017) Lightbox Installation
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Cyprien Gaillard – Nightlife (2015) 3D Film

It is difficult to explain and summarise exactly what happens and what is on display in this basement, also there is a reason why you can’t take photographs and not many images have been shared of the space, it’s meant to be experienced first hand. What I can say is that it is a diverse and eclectic mix of artwork; varying from traditional framed charcoal drawings and photographs to more abstract leather fashion pieces and plastic sculpture.

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Chapter 3HREE exhibition space (images by NPO Radio 4)

There is a loose theme through the artwork which is described as:

“the human desire to come closer to nature, by curning it or even destroying it. How do we find a grip on a planet that is irreversibly changed by the influence of our behaviour?”

In this essay, Sontag criticises how art is often judged primarily on the basis of intellectual interpretation and instead a work of art generates its own mode of understanding, which encompasses more statements based on analysis and content. Explaining how searching for symbolic meaning and metaphors in a piece of art can trivialise the innate quality and character of it. I believe, with this in mind, it is understandable that many of the artworks in this exhibition don’t link together, nor is there a great deal to read about for each. This allows you, as the primary viewer, to make your own assumption about the artwork there and then.

The exhibition’s description of a “literal experience of a tunnel vision, which may seem endless and hopeless at first, but gradually becomes more and more pleasant” is very appropriate and understandable. It is something which needs to be experienced first-hand, in the setting of the space.

Written by

Rough like Timberland Wear

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