Willem van Genk (1927-2005)
The exhibition WOEST (‘Fierce’) is a journey through Willem van Genk’s restless mind and his unrelenting quest for meaning in a world that baffled him. He translated his anxieties into overwhelming art: his paintings are crammed with mind-blowing architecture, bird’s-eye views of sinister universes, crowds, trains, trolley-buses and airships. The Outsider Art Museum shows the intensity of his experiences in a way that turns the viewer into a partner in his imaginative inner world.
The work of the Netherlands’ most famous outsider artist is autobiographical. We see the torrent of ideas that live in him. The many layers of meaning in his works intrigue, creating a spectacle that mesmerises the viewer for hours. Eventually the connections experienced by Van Genk become clear: between iron station roofs and spiderwebs, between criminality and sexuality, between fascism and communism. Van Genk constructs and orders with a masterly touch.
The exhibition WOEST includes more than 60 works from Dutch and international collections, some of which have never been exhibited before. For the first time in years, Metrostation Opéra, the impressive depiction of the Paris metro stop held by the Stedelijk Museum, will be shown in public, as well as the magnificent Kiev Station Moskou, which has been lent by the Rijksmuseum. In 2020 the exhibition will travel to the Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne and then to the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg.
The exhibition is on show from Thursday 19 September to Sunday 3 May 2020.
Art Brut | Jean Dubuffet’s revolution in art
The exhibition ‘Art Brut | Jean Dubuffet’s revolution in art’ shows over 150 works, with which artist and collector Jean Dubuffet shocked the Paris cultural establishment in 1949. Seventy years later, these works are coming to the Netherlands for the first time.
Immediately after the Second World War the artist and collector Jean Dubuffet embarked on his search for new, pure and spontaneous works of art, remote from the established order. On his journey he visited psychiatric institutions and prisons, created a networks of intellectuals, poets, painters and collectors. During his various encounters he collected works which in his opinion were the proof that this art form, the one produced by people with no specific education to art, deserved a place in the art world. Established assumptions, academic views and standards must be cast aside in favour of a new, pure and spontaneous art.
This exhibition provides a reconstruction of the basic ideas of Art Brut, with reference to the works assembled by Dubuffet. Why did he purchase some works but not others? Which criteria did he use when collection work, and what information did he collect? And what became of the artists whose work he collected for his Compagnie de l’Art Brut?
Art Brut | Jean Dubuffet’s revolution in art includes works by great figures such as Aloïse Corbaz, Fleury-Joseph Crépin, Gaston Duf, Auguste Forestier and Adolf Wölfli.
The exhibition is on show from Thursday 31 January to Sunday 25 August 2019.
ITE Art | Finnish collection Ammann
The Outsider Art Museum presents ‘ITE Art | Finnish collection Ammann’. This unique exhibition shows the private collection of Max Ammann, a leading collector of Outsider Art. It is the first time the collection is shown in the Netherlands. ITE stands for Itse Tehty Elämä, ‘self-made life’ in Finnish. Keeping off the beaten track, and using materials from the Finnish forests, the ITE Art-artists speak their own mysterious language.
‘We collect works that never ceases to fascinate.’
With this exhibition the Outsider Art Museum takes visitors into the world of artists who live solitary lives in the backwoods of Finland. Typical features of their work include fantasy, curiosity, creativity, places of interest and visions. Visitors can get to know the talented world of Finnish Outsider Art: artists outside the established artistic order, whose work is seldom on public display.
Open from 14 June till 13 January 2019
In the exhibition New Masters, the Outsider Art Museum introduces 30 intimate portraits of contemporary Outsider artists, together with their work. In a series of touching portraits, photographer Sander Troelstra gives a face to their fascinating world. Troelstra has won the Canon Silver Camera Award on many occasions, and also took the honours at the prestigious Dutch National Portrait Award in 2015.
The striking characteristics of work by these artists – fixed outlines, recording the world around them, velvet textures or hard sculptures – appear to speak a language of their own and often contain a message that to us, is shrouded in mystery. Nevertheless, if we open our minds to the personal perceptions of the creators, it is certainly possible to comprehend their work.
Only a few decades ago, it would have been impossible for these New Masters to launch successful careers – their work would have remained unseen due to their social isolation and a life behind closed doors. For many years, the art world was hesitant to afford autodidactic artists a place on the art circuit. The arrival of the Outsider Art Museum in 2016 helped to accelerate the necessary change: the museum contributes significantly to the recognition and inclusion of these new talents by and in the international museum world.
Open from 4 October till 28 may 2018
This exhibition offers you the unique opportunity to view the earliest collection of Outsider Art in Europe. Dubuffet’s List breathes new life into a significant historical moment and places Outsider Art in an art historical perspective. Discover the origins of Outsider Art, seen through the eyes of Jean Dubuffet, one of the most prominent artists of the 20th century.
Dubuffet’s List | Masterpieces from the Prinzhorn Collection offers fresh insights into the important and inevitable ‘encounter’ between the ideas of psychiatrist Hans Prinzhorn and those of the ‘discoverer of Art Brut’: Jean Dubuffet (1901-1985). Both of these men are the founding fathers of what we nowadays call Outsider Art.
Dubuffet viewed the impressive Prinzhorn Collection as a forerunner of his own ‘Collection de l’Art Brut’, so his visit to Prinzhorn’s collection was a long-cherished dream. One should note that during his visit, Dubuffet viewed the art works from a different perspective than that of his shining example. Prinzhorn considered the works from his academic standpoint, while Dubuffet viewed the unconventional collection as an artist and collector.
‘This research explores the foundations of a key moment in art history, and this was all possible thanks to that one list made by Dubuffet during his now renowned visit to the Prinzhorn Collection’.
The Outsider Art Museum offers you the unique opportunity to compare and admire Outsider Art produced in different countries. A major exhibition of both Chinese and Dutch Outsider Art has never before been on display in the Netherlands. The exhibition features in excess of 200 exceptional works by Chinese and Dutch outsider artists.
Passion, religion and power, but also monsters, dreams and nightmares: the works demonstrate striking similarities, irrespective of their geographical or cultural origins. All around the world, outsider artists are following their inner voice: freed from the path well trodden, the artists transport you into their uncharted, vivid fantasy worlds.
The collection is largely derived from The Dolhuys and focuses on present Outsider Art from upcoming talent. In this first exhibition, over a hundred art works are shown, made by English, French, Iranian and Dutch artists. Alongside the permanent collection, a special area is dedicated to Japanese Outsider Art. One of the most famous Japanese artists is Shinichi Sawada (1982). Sawada exhibited his work at the Venice Biennale in 2013, signaling the breakthrough of Outsider Art into the international art world.