This is the second part of two about the reopened Kunstmuseum in The Hague and the exhibitions of the so-called Mondrian Route. Click here to see pictures of the first part, about A.R. Penck and Navid Nuur.
The second leg of the tour leads along the permanent exhibition about Mondrian and De Stijl and the great solo show of Lucassen.
Of course the KM is famous for its Mondrian collection, works by other De Stijl artists and their contemporaries.
Usually i take that exhibition for granted.
I’ve seen it a few times, it’s good to know that it’s there and that’s it.
As following the Mondrian Route means it is obligatory to see the De Stijl & Mondrian section, i took the opportunity to check if my favourites are still there.
Of course they are and they never disappoint.
Again, under the tranquillity of the Covid-19 measures at the museum, it was a great joy to see these works in all there preciousness again, without the pressure of any other visitors who may disturb your attention.
After all, art watching is an egotistic activity.
At best it’s you and the work of art, and nobody in between or around.
However, i couldn’t spend much time there as i needed time for the Lucassen show. Reinier Lucassen (1939) has built an impressive oeuvre of paintings.
He started in the 1960s as an artist who combined elements of figurative and abstract art and of high art and consumer culture, like other artists in the Netherlands and Belgium, usually called Nieuwe figuratie (New Figuration).
In the case of Lucassen it has become an art intermingled with the beauty of the banal and the absurd.
Lucassen’s work is also linguistic, as such it may be even more mysterious to a non-Dutch speaker than it is for a Batavophone.
As usual in these big shows at the KM there is an overload of works.
The works are not presented chronologically.
To an extent, that works, as mutual correlations between the paintings of different periods may become clear.
On the other hand, after watching intensely (which is now really possible!) for some time, one gets the idea of getting a bit dizzy of all these different voices that shout, sing and whisper at you.
To be short about visiting the KM at the moment: it is now possible to really look at the works intensely, or even reflect on them while looking, which is great and unique for this period of the crisis.
However, as the exhibitions are quite big – apart from Navid Nuur’s, although his is big in its reflective content – you need to plan ahead what you really want to see.
Otherwise you may not fall victim to the Covid-19 virus but to the Stendhal syndrome.
© Villa Next Door 2020
Contents of all photographs courtesy to the estate of the artists, to Lucassen and to the Kunstmuseum, Den Haag.
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