|1961-1965 educated as sculptor at art academies in the
Netherlands, Italy and England. Revolt against the art school with
its emphasis on the fixed and lasting art work.
1965-1966 development of a topological drawing system, a configuration
of patterned growing lines, soon moving over the edge of the paper,
table, house and street. Mostly with erasable materials like chalk
| 1966-1967 experimental film and ‘expanded cinema’
with Australian artist Jeffrey Shaw: ‘Toward a film as continuous
static graphic projections’. A film with neither beginning nor
end, with fast wipes based on a thousand non-animated drawings, as
a research into the principle of subliminal perception.
1966 basement of Better Books in London, a space for ‘happenings’.
Projection of the continuous film on series of half transparent screens,
smoke and balloons. Usage of long rolls of PVC tubing a more tangible
form of continuous lines.
| 1967 school blackboard with examples of the principle
of an ever bifurcating drawing, as used for pupils following a course
‘continuous drawing for beginners’. A course modeled after
the American ‘Famous Artists School’.
||1967 continuous drawing from London to Amsterdam executed
with six students, starting at the steps of the Institute of Contemporary
Art in London, then by taxi and KLM airplane to Schiphol and Amsterdam,
where the drawing grows over the facade of the Museum of Modern Art.
1967 environment for heads in the London gallery Keith Alborn &
Partners with inflatable tubes, bifurcating water tubes en head phones
with completely different sound tracks (from insults and scolding
to lovely sweet music).
|1967 test for ‘pneumatic arising’ in canals
by ‘Sigma Projecten’, a series of street activities with
drawings, projections, inflatables and expanded cinema in Amsterdam
and Rotterdam together with a.o. Jeffrey Shaw, Theo Botschuijver,
Pieter Boersma and Willem Breuker.
||1969 ‘Woningburo de Kraker’ (housing agency
‘the burglar’/squatter) resistance against demolition
of usable houses in the Dapperbuurt neighbourhood of Amsterdam, a
starting point for many years of actions against housing shortage
and other ways of urban development and design (adapt itself to the
existing city instead of the reverse).
||1977 opening ceremony for the alternative international
bookshop ‘Het Fort van Sjakoo’, at first a squat, in the
Amsterdam Jodenbree street. An initiative for independent information
distribution. The bookshop is run on a collective basis and still
exists in 2004.
1977 during this opening also a visualization of the old building
alignment of the street. before the demolition and urban development
of the sixties, by holding an inflatable tube of some hundreds of
meters. Elements from happening art are put to use in urban actions.
|1986 exhibition ‘Het IJ geopend, de binnenstad
gedicht’ (the opening of the IJ (old Amsterdam harbor: het IJ)
the closing/poetry of the inner town) about 25 years of urban change
in this area. Visualization of urban development processes with hinging
door photo-panels on the basis of a database of old and new urban
plans (‘Planotheek’). Exhibition system developed with
a group of former urban activists of the Nieuwmarkt neighbourhood
(‘Het Vrije Archief’) in collaboration with the local
citizens council (‘Wijkcentrum d’Oude Stadt’). Transparent
overlays make it possible to indicate schematically planned buildings;
also comparative photography and historical visual impressions of
25 years of social change in 16 sub-areas.
||1986 ‘Archizwenk’ (architectural swerve),
a method to understand the movement of the eye when observing our
build environment, using photo collage; also comparing these images
with the traditional static ways of architectural photography and
other forms of representation of architectural plans like perspective
drawings and maquettes. Photography Pieter Boersma, in collaboration
with Hubert Kraaijvanger.
||1973-1998 work as librarian and curator at the University
Library Amsterdam and the International Institute of Social History.
Founding of the Documentation Center of Modern Social Movements. Observing
the change from card-file to computer catalogue. The daily confrontation
with big quantities of information materials and the necessity to
store these in separate, non-public, storage rooms, gives rise to
the idea that other forms of information representation than text
card files and computer screens are needed.
984 some of the collection areas at the Documentation Center are ‘appropriate
technology’, development policy and environment. A manifestation
in the Amsterdam Tropical Museum leads to the making of an international
guide and reference work on these subjects.
|1 This is just before the common availability of personal
computers, so produced by using duplicated paper strips and standardized
documentation forms. The making of the guide brings up he issue of
the different interpretations of the notion: Third World. A series
of analytical maps is made which maps differing world pictures from
the First to the Fifth world. On the basis of simple world maps (both
Euro- and Asia-centric) only those areas of the world are shown that
are part of a specific interpretation of the notion Third World. These
compact visualizations help to better understand the differences between
‘world view’ and ‘world picture’. (maps drawn
by Bert Baanders).
||1987 one of a series of exhibitions dramatizing information
in the exhibition space of the University Library Amsterdam. This
one is about prison experiences from different perspectives. Historical
objects, paintings and projections of posters about political and
other prisoners. Chained books and a video surveillance system in
which the visitor sees himself next to an original 18th century edition
of the famous book of Bentham about the ‘workhouse’ and
the ‘panopticum’, predecessor of modern surveillance systems.
An ‘emblematic’ form of representing historical documents.
Through entourage and arrangement of books, documents and associated
objects, a tensioned field of meanings is created, creating different
dimensions. Different from the one-dimensional systematic arrangement
in a reference library or in textual representations using a card
file index or a computer catalogue.
||1988 pre-arranged portrait for a magazine article on
the special collections of the University Library Amsterdam. An appetizing
“window-dressing” which at a glance gives an impression
of a collection that in reality covers some hundreds meters of shelving
(photographer Bert Nienhuis/Vrij Nederland). The bigger a collection
is, the more it becomes invisible: brown archive boxes, grey cupboards,
pneumatic compact shelving systems, closed off storage rooms. The
growing wealth of available information in our society is progressively
taken from our sight. When something is offered to our sight, it is
in a vitrine: Do Not Touch!
||1988 ‘Extreme information streams’, an exhibition
in the ‘center for instable media V2’, at that time based
in Den Bosch. A choice from the collection of the Documentation center
of Social Movements is put on show, with a catalogue and a microfiche
with a selection of documents on show.
1985-1989 creation of the Foundation Europe Against the Current, with
the aim to bring together alternative publishers form Eastern and
Western Europe to facilitate independent forms of exchange.
An international database of addresses and information about aims
and activities of these groups is made. In September 1989, a few months
before the ‘Fall of the Berlin Wall’ the first manifestation
is held in Amsterdam with hundreds of participants from over twenty
|A system of pictograms for different information carriers (book,
periodical, video, sound cassette, etc.) and other activities (publishing,
collecting, performing, broadcasting) is devised for the production
of a big catalogue with a thousand addresses (pictogram design Bas
1989-1991 a traveling exhibition with examples of alternative information
carriers from East and West European countries, with a flexible mounting
system to present the great variety of documents (design of this system
in collaboration with Frank Hoogveld).