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Rineke Dijkstra

Rineke Dijkstra (solo show)
De Pont Museum, Tilburg
10 March - 22 July 2018

Rineke Dijkstra, Vondelpark, Amsterdam, June 19, 2005, 2005 © Rineke Dijkstra
Rineke Dijkstra, Vondelpark, Amsterdam, June 19, 2005, 2005 © Rineke Dijkstra

Rineke Dijkstra (Sittart 1959) became internationally known with her "Beach Portraits" during the 1990s. With this moving series of photographs, she established her reputation as a maker of portraits that express the identity, vulnerability and dignity of the subjects. Last year she was granted the Hasselblad Award, a prestigious photography prize.

Dijkstra prefers to work in series, which allow the differences and similarities among the portrait subjects and their cultural backgrounds to emerge in a subtle manner. The time-consuming process of working with a technical camera determines her approach. She creates the conditions and plays with the light, which appears to be natural and yet has a slightly different appearance. She chooses her figures carefully, but chance plays a significant role as well. The sharply focused photographs give the viewer a sense of being face to face with the portrait subjects. At the same time, the serial character of the work also makes the subjects lose a certain degree of individuality. As a viewer, one mainly identifies with the universal human feelings (e.g. shyness, a lack of ease) displayed by them.
The theme of transformation keeps on surfacing in various series, such as the one in which a friendly-looking French boy evolves, in just a few years, into a stalwart soldier. But is this real, or is he playing a role?

Such questions interest Dijkstra. Despite the faithfully rendered appearance of the photograph, the portrait subject ultimately remains unfathomable and elusive. Who is hiding behind a mask, and who is showing his or her true face? This dilemma is subtly conveyed in the video of Marianna, a ten-year-old Russian ballerina who practices her dance steps in a pink studio. The cloyingly sweet surroundings and the spirited music stand in stark contrast to the stern voice of a teacher who is giving instructions off screen. With each new attempt to execute the steps perfectly, Marianna smiles as she has been conditioned to do, but gradually a certain fatigue and defiance nonetheless begin to emerge.

De Pont Museum, Tilburg


Additional:

Rineke Dijkstra

Picasso, a Period of Conflict (group show)
Carré d'Art, Nîmes
24 October 2018 - 3 March 2019

Rineke Dijkstra, I See a Woman Crying, 2009 (film still) © Rineke Dijkstra
Rineke Dijkstra, I See a Woman Crying, 2009 (film still) © Rineke Dijkstra

For the exhibition at the Carré d’Art, the Musée Picasso has consented to an exceptional loan of thirty-seven works. The choice for the Carré d’Art fell upon the creations of Picasso during the agitated political period of the Second World War through to his remarkable 1951 painting, Massacre in Korea. Ever since 1937, with the creation of Guernica, Picasso experienced a period of political commitment during which he lost all hope of seeing a free Spain. These troubled times were reflected in most of the subjects – portraits, still lifes, landscapes – which he treated over the course of these years. Violence is brilliantly portrayed in La Suppliante (1937), as well as in the many portraits of Dora Maar, in which it plays a vital part. It is also present in the Weeping Woman series or Cat Catching a Bird.

The exhibition also attempts to initiate a dialogue between Picasso’s works and those of contemporary artists. There is, on the one hand, in the very heart of the space dedicated to Picasso, the presence of artists who provide perspectives on his work. Also, in parallel, the exhibition Lignes de Fuite (Vanishing Points) presents artists of different backgrounds who are directly concerned by the conflicts in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

Carré d'Art, Nîmes


Rineke Dijkstra

Rineke Dijkstra / Nan Goldin / Sheila Hicks (solo presentation)
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
20 October 2018 - 21 January 2019

Rineke Dijkstra, Vondelpark, Amsterdam, June 19, 2005, 2005 © Rineke Dijkstra
Rineke Dijkstra, Vondelpark, Amsterdam, June 19, 2005, 2005 © Rineke Dijkstra

Rineke Dijkstra (Dutch, b. 1959) is known for her intimate photographs that capture subjects in moments of change and transition. Subtle, yet revealing poses and a sense of vulnerability are hallmarks of her portraiture. This presentation brings together seven full-length portraits from the Park series, for which Dijkstra photographed children in major urban parks around the globe in dialogue with the captivating video portrait Marianna (The Fairy Doll) from 2014.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston


Rineke Dijkstra

Ecstasy (group show)
Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Stuttgart
29 September 2018 - 24 February 2019

Rineke Dijkstra, The Krazyhouse (Megan, Simon, Nicky, Philip, Dee), Liverpool, UK, 2009, video still, 2009 © Rineke Dijkstra
Rineke Dijkstra, The Krazyhouse (Megan, Simon, Nicky, Philip, Dee), Liverpool, UK, 2009, video still, 2009 © Rineke Dijkstra

Ecstasy is one of the oldest and one of the most astounding phenomena of European and non-European cultures. Originally forged in the context of religion and ritual, the transcendental experience of ecstasy was first conceptualized in antiquity. It has been an integral part of Western social theories ever since, even as its definition and social significance have been continually modified and expanded. In indigenous cultural spaces, ecstasy generally bears positive connotations and is experienced within the context of ritual acts, but it was and is often perceived as threatening in societies dominated by industrialization, capitalism, and globalization. Here ecstasy means loss of control, and it harbors the danger of an individual or an entire collective deviating from the norm. Exceptions are transcendental experiences within religious contexts or profane ecstasies, as may be observed during sporting events, concerts, or politically motivated activities.
In its cultural significance and complexity, ecstasy also entered the visual arts and engaged in extraordinary alliances with the related disciplines of music and dance.

Beginning in the fall of 2018, the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart will, for the first time, trace these and other connections as it dedicates itself to the phenomenon of ecstasy in a large thematic exhibition. Drawing from paradigmatic examples from antiquity to the present, the exhibition illuminates the various spiritual, political, psychological, social, sexual, and aesthetic implications of euphoric and intoxicated states between asceticism and excess.

In approximately ten thematic rooms, the visitor will become familiar with the various faces of
ecstasy and with the shifting social significance of mind-altering states as it changed over the
centuries. In so doing, it will also consider how different cultural spheres handle the phenomenon of ecstasy. With art at its foundation, the exhibition will introduce the viewer to the various ways that artists have approached ecstatic states—from pictorial representations to video and installation works to kinesthetic experiences. The visitor may therefore not only comprehend but also experience the relevance and historical development of ecstasy. Music plays a central role here, as it unifies transcendental experience in all cultures. Rhythmic sounds, repetitive movements, and visual stimuli prepare the groundwork for reaching a state of »being beside oneself.«

Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Stuttgart


Rineke Dijkstra

Many & Beautiful Things (group show)
Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange, Newlyn
29 September 2018 - 5 January 2019

Many & Beautiful Things is concerned with that time in youth when anything is possible, everything is ahead of you, and life is a rush for new experiences. Of course, there may be inner anguishes, but still there’s an abandon, a thirst – before it inevitably leaves, usually gradually, sometimes suddenly. Many & Beautiful Things is as much about those points when things change, as it is about a mind-set that it won’t. And perhaps a nostalgia for more innocent times.

Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange, Newlyn


Rineke Dijkstra

The Moment is Eternity – Works from the Olbricht Collection (group show)
me Collectors Room / Stiftung Ulbricht, Berlin
26 September 2018 - 1 April 2019

From 26.09.2018 to 01.04.2019, with some 300 works by approximately 60 artists on display, The Moment is Eternity shines the spotlight on the photographic works in the Olbricht Collection, showing them in dialogue with other artworks from the collection, as well as artefacts from the Wunderkammer.

Transience is one of the key themes of the Olbricht Collection. And what artistic medium other than photography could be better suited to addressing the questions of time and history that this theme throws up? Lending duration to the moment is inscribed into the very medium itself. In this property, art and philosophy come together. Ever since Antiquity, eternity has been described as timeless, and it is in this sense that Goethe equates the moment with eternity in his poem ‘Vermächtnis’ (Legacy, 1830). For humanity, the moment is the only perceptible slice of eternity.

Goethe’s ‘legacy’ is to shape the world through sensuous and reasoned perception: Jumping ahead through the epochs, this fits together with Henri Cartier-Bresson’s dictum of the ‘decisive moment’ to describe an art that is able to simultaneously capture the essence of an event and the form that corresponds to that essence. Just as the photographic grasp on reality intensifies the signs and symbols of an era, the interplay of other art forms also reflects diverse aspects such as duration and transience. The expansive range of the Olbricht Collection explores such themes as beauty and sensuousness, becoming and disappearing, and the body and society, as manifested in various epochs and media.

me Collectors Room / Stiftung Ulbricht, Berlin