A while back I had a chat with friends and they thought it would be cool if I were to make collodion plates during the build of the new A2 tunnel in Maastricht. I thought it to be a great idea and I knew someone who’s working on this massive project, named Bjorn Vink. So, one day I pulled his jacket (sweater whatever or I just said hi) and I asked him if that would be at all possible. His answer was quite positive 😉
It took a bit to plan everything, need good weather, needs to be approved on time etc. This weekend’s Saturday there was an Open Day for the public to come and see the tunnel, how the build came along etc. On Sunday employees could bring their families and that’s when we were able to come in! We first enjoyed a guided tour by Bjorn which started at 10 AM with lots of interesting background information on the build and we decided on a final standing place. We set everything up at around 11:30. I had until around 2:15 PM to make images. Needless to say time flew by like mad and we had a GREAT time!
This specific tunnel being built is a 2-way tunnel, separated lanes, double-decked, so four lanes in total. The build has started in, I believe, 2008 and will take until 2016 to be finished completely, and even then more work needs to be finished such as the greenery and the real estate parts.
It is a massive undertaking, taking place right at the heart of the city, but I think it will all be worth it. It was extremely fascinating to be allowed to walk the premises and see with my own eyes just how massive this project really is, and even then you still get to see (and understand) a mere glimpse of it.
Bjorn is also a photographer besides being the Senior Adviser geo-technique / geo-fysiology / geo-hydrology at the A2 tunnel project. He loves to make time-lapses and made one of us with an abused Nikon D700 setting up the darkroom tent and everything and making the first images, really cool!
On to the collodion part. I worked on black glass solely this time, partially because there was an interest from a potential buyer in the glass plates. So, not yet the inauguration of my Linhof. I chose for 8×10″ plates and 10×10″. The latter I partially regret now because I took pre-used plates that I cleaned thoroughly yet not good enough apparently. I used these cardboard sheets to place in between plates to keep them from scratching but they leave this nasty pattern on my plates which you can’t see only after exposing the plates aka when it’s too late. Never too old to learn I guess 😉 Below a panoramic impression (made with an iPhone) of the site where the darkroom and camera were setup.
Locate the camera and darkroom tent if you can 😉 The first image I took is situated in the middle of this panoramic image.
The second image is where the camera is standing in the panoramic image. The first 10×10″ was unusable because of the patterns I mentioned earlier and the collodion layer even cracked at that spot when heating the plate for varnishing. A perfect trashcan image..
The structures, all that rhythm with the lines is so cool! I wish I could have made more images, it’s so fantastic and they look so good on collodion.
The last image that worked out okay is the next one. It was shot looking outwards from the tunnel.
I made another image after this one looking into the tunnel where it was quite dark. I found it hard to guesstimate exposure time and actually overexposed it a bit. The biggest mistake however I made with that plate was when rinsing it at home, the collodion came off the plate, another one for the trash can 😦 And that was the last image I could make. Bjorn had another meeting and, of course, we were not allowed there without the proper guidance. We packed everything swiftly, lugged the stuff back to the car (thanks for helping Bart, Bjorn and dad ;-)) and found our way back home, where we unloaded the car and crashed. It had been quite the day.
If you care to find out more about this wonderful tunnel project check their website for more information.
Oh, and a final Thank You goes out to the weather gods 😉 I don’t know what dance I did but the weather was really on our side which was not something we expected during the coarse of the week.
Oh, and another thing I need to change in my work thingy, I have to ditch that LED light with battery. It works fantastic for the first 2 plates but after that the intensity of the light greatly diminishes making it really hard to see where to put the plate in the back and, even worse, where to pour the developer. It worked pretty alright but it’s a needless pain.
Anyway, I pray this adventure gets a second chance because I LOVE it and would like to get more out of it than I did so far!
It has come to pass, Kunsttour 2013. It has been a fun three days. Also the opening was a lot of fun! As always a short compilation of the place where I exhibited, this year Avenue Céramique 191, one of the main buildings of the Kunsttour. I met a lot of nice people, new ones, and those that already follow my work for quite some time now. They made for interesting stories and inspiration to keep doing what I love most; photography. Thank you!
Some crazy bunnies and a Mickey Mouse / Dart Vader from Johan Bruninx (he belongs to a group called Vonk VZW and exhibited as part of this group).
Veronique Alberghs had some nice paintings on the wall. I liked them. Also part of the group Vonk VZW.
Also part of the Vonk group was Jan de Lauré with a nice drawing (and painting?).
MAAK had a lovely table and lamp to show. Too bad they weren’t around during those three days (as weren’t most of the Vonk group though).
Imke van den Berg stood next to me with different techniques among which were collography and etching. Interesting work, one I liked very much!
On the opposite side of me hung the work of Lily Scheffer, a combination of photography and manipulation afterwards, which resulted in some colourful new worlds.
Next to Lily were a couple of works by Alexandra Knie who works with a combination of painting, graphics and textile.
On the other side of the space were large paintings by Marcel Willems. That work is what I like!
John Bijnens, also part of Vonk, presented his work (one piece?) at the other side of Alexandra Knie. I liked this piece although I would have liked it better in another presentation style.
In the middle of the room there were a couple of blocks laying flat on the ground, providing space to Wilma Schipholt and Herma van den Heuvel.
Wilma makes small statues of ceramique, really funny and imaginative. Herma makes lovely pieces of glass.
Niels Savelkouls was there again with his sort of maquette with all sorts of stuff going on.
And of course, I was there too 😉 I exhibited my “Devolution” series based on Mondrian’s “Evolution” as that was chosen by the Kunsttour Committee. Received some good comments on this work which hasn’t gotten out much before, just once. Not a humorous piece but nonetheless 😉 Two days before the opening I received an email if I had some more work to put on the other side as one person cancelled. No problemo! I was quite happy to be able to show more work, some genuine plates.
The three days flew by like mad. It went really fast. Had some good conversations at the table where we could sit during the day and drank some nice wine. Nothing bad there 😉 Didn’t sell any work unfortunately but I did get invited to join the art route Roerdalen organised by Kunststroom next year (2014) so that’s awesome! They house their exhibitions in monumental buildings so that makes for a great setting to present ones work. Looking forward!
Hopefully see you next year (sooner would be nice too)!
So…not this weekend but the next Kunsttour 2013 will be held again and I will be part of it, again! The theme of this year is: Is there something to laugh (at/about whatever) in art. The poster is laughable to say the least… The Kunsttour Committee has actually made a selection of the artist’s works they wanted to be part of this year’s Kunsttour that they felt represented the theme best. The works chosen of me were as much as a surprise to me as it will be for you, although I like the work they picked.. I like especially their reasoning behind it for picking that specific body of work.
Feel free to come and have a look, the locations are great! The Wiebengahal, next to the Bonnenfantenmuseum, is the main location this year. I’m located at the other side of the street at Maison Ceramique. I will be there all three days.
For more information check the website.
Yesterday was the final day of the Maastricht Antiquarian Book and Print fair in Maastricht, MABP for short. It’s a fair where national and international antiquarians offer their books and prints for sale. It ranges from old maps to travel guides, from etchings to ancient children’s books. The location of the fair is also nothing short of gorgeous: the St. Jans Church at the Vrijthof. This was my first visit ever to this fair but next year I definitely will be going again!
Of course I’m always looking for all-things-photography and I certainly found something great: a book with photographs of Werner Mantz. Originally from Koln he came to Maastricht in 1932 with an atelier and settled for good here in 1938. I heard his name many times before, missed a big exhibition of his work in Maastricht a couple of years ago and somehow just never came around to look at his work properly. Until yesterday. At the stand of Libraire Stille I came across some books containing his work and didn’t take me long to buy one. His work is absolutely stunning, great use of available natural light, each image very carefully composed, almost as if directed.
I feel so free to post some of his images I scanned from the book to illustrate the beauty of his work. If this is in any way a violation of the rules, let me know and I’ll remove them right away.
There even is a blog about him (probably made by one of his children, maybe even grand children, not sure) if you’re keen on seeing more of him.
Really pleased with this book and hopefully more will follow soon!
Yesterday finally was a day where I had the time to go out with my collodion stuff again! Had to wait til after three as the weather was a bit unstable. “Buienradar” is a wonderful site to keep track of these nasty rainy moments. Gave a green light after 3 and came out right!
Brought too little water with me, just 5 liters, normally at least 10, but it had to do. Shot 4×10″ plates and used up quite a bit to pinpoint exposure. There was a lot of UV, times when stopped down to at least f22, where 1 a 2 seconds which is very little. Today I fiddled a bit around with them, removing a little veil with a cotton ball and varnished them old-shool to give them that little extra weight. They came out just fine! Looking forward to the next shoot, hopefully this Sunday!
Anyway, I’m one happy goose so good night y’all! 🙂
So , here they are at last! In short; it was a fantastic weekend. In long; please read on 😉
Friday we set everything up. I was able to use pretty much all the space I wanted which was great. No room for hanging the work which was great too; saved a lot of work and hassle. We laid everything out on tables and saved one table in the middle to display the camera, a book with guiding information, prices and a guest book. At first we covered the tables with a green cloth which later that day got removed by Franz Rothenburg, one of the organizers, as you can see on first photos. Luckily he decided to remove them and spread the layout a little although I was a bit afraid when he mentioned having done so the night before opening.
The boat was situated at the wharf of the Landbouwbelang which, unfortunately, wasn’t clear enough for everybody as some ended up missing the boat. Great location though, not many people know this place but it’s a beautiful spot in Maastricht. Calm but raw, showing the industrial part of Maastricht in its “gone-by” glory.
The weather proved to be an excellent companion this weekend. The sky remained blue and the sun hot and burning most of the time. Also good companions were on the boat as in the other artists. Katrien Haemers showed her paintings which were quite fascinating! The work of Astrid Verkoijen also appealed to me. Her colorful work used in her furniture looked really great. Jimmy Dee played guitar on board and sang as well. He also performed on a didgeridoo which was cool!
He also gathered quite the bit of attention.
Another musical artist who performed on Sunday with Coen van Dam was Nico Zwackhalen with his bluesy voice. I met Coen before while there were still those famous jazz-monday-evenings at the Tramhalte in Maastricht. He rocked the piano there and I loved his playing from the start. Great to have met him on the boat listening to his music again. Downstairs at the boat “Viola di Gamba” gave a performance too.
Coretta Dekker treated us with a comical performance which was really funny. Unfortunately she found it to be not good enough so she canceled her performance for Sunday. Too bad; would have loved to see it again 🙂
Let’s not forget the wonderful poet of the house “Krokus” with his sharp words. A true addition to the boat with a remarkable feel for expression.
Youri Penders showed us the wonderful process of the printing press late 1800’s. Really cool as my camera is from somewhere around that very same time! He explained the process with quite the bit of passion and engagement which made it all the more fun.
Of course, let us not forget about the people who made this all worthwhile: the guests!
Also, let us thank the weather for being so incredibly kind!!
As you can see a totally different KunstTour than last year and that made it all the more fun! Hope to see you (again) next year.
🙂 Indra 🙂
Last monday “de Limburger” called me after they received a press piece on the exhibition at the Bastaboot during the Kunsttour. They saw me mentioned exhibiting photos made with a process dating back from 1851 and got interested. The lady on the phone asked me if we could meet for an interview. I said..sure!
So, Wednesday we did. I talked about the process and my thoughts behind it and set everything up to actually show it to her as that would tell more than me just explaining everything. So she modelled for me and ended up that morning with a beautiful photo of hers.
And today the interview got published in the news paper! I’m very proud! There are a couple of things missing and incorrectly stated in the interview which I would like to rectify here. First of all; it’s not printed in Silver Sulphate and lavender. Silver Nitrate is used to sensitize the plate and the lavender is only used in the varnish. Secondly; the project of Alexander Simays has nothing to do with my fight against superficiality. It’s just a side step; you have to do something light sometimes.. Thirdly; the place where I exhibit during the Kunsttour is not mentioned. This is at the Bastaboot as can be seen in the post below. Anyway, that was it and I’m very happy with the interview. Now I am a BM-er 😉
To be able to read the article better you can download it here: InterviewLimburger-1
Have a good read!
BASTABOOT VAART UIT TIJDENS KUNSTTOUR 2011
Het culturele anker BASTA Maastricht beziet alles van de zonnige kant.
Het blikveld wordt tijdens de Kunsttour 2011 wederom verlegd naar de
Maas. We zien graag het culturele licht schijnen in alleman water.
Vandaar dat we op Zaterdag 28 en Zondag 29 Mei om 12.00 en 15.00 uur
gaan cruisen en de opvarenden een verrassend programma bieden tussen
de veilige havens ‘Het Landbouwbelang en AINSI’.
Omdat we ons nooit laten insnoeren en voorschrijven waar we aan moeten
voldoen, kiezen we voor een eigenzinnig programma dat nog lang van zich
zal doen laten spreken, ook als de kruitdampen reeds lang zijn opgetrokken.
En zoals de traditie voorschrijft is onze huisdichter Krokus de rode draad in
het programma. Ook de Duitse klankarchitect ‘Der Nitszche‘ zal de Maas
vervoeren met zijn magisch gitaarspel.
Verder zijn er exposities van kunstenaars, muziek en theater die het programma
Astrid Verkoijen, met Vormgeving
Coen van Dam, met piano
Coretta Dekker, met theater
GambaConsort Maastricht: Anneke Pasman – diskantgamba, Hildegard Moonen – altgamba, Bert Pasman – basgamba
Indra Moonen, fototentoonstelling (foto’s zijn gemaakt met een techniek van ±160 jaar geleden)
Jimmy Dee, met zang, gitaar en veel meer
Katrien Haemers, met haar schilderijen
Nico Zwackhalen, met zang
Ronald van Laar, met beelden
Youri Penders, met boekdruk kunst
Kortom, laat u verrassen en overrompelen. En ook niet onbelangrijk te vermelden:
De toegang is gratis. Er kunnen weliswaar 100 mensen mee op de boot maar
vanwege de enorme belangstelling is het aan te raden tijdig te reserveren.
Opstapplaats: Biesenwal/Wilhelminakade 28 en 29 Mei om 12.00 en 15.00 uur.
p.s. De boot heet “the Dream”
+31 6 290 55 232
Yesterday I gave a Collodion workshop to Jacques who had contacted me a couple of weeks ago. It was a great day with an enthusiastic participant. He worked very clean and ended up with very beautiful plates of himself! The weather allowed us to work outside which was great. There’s nothing wrong with sniffing a bit of sun in between the ether 😉
Thank you Jacques for a wonderful day and for sharing the photos with me. The plates were photographed outside hence the reflections you see in them. Not that many photos were made, we were just too busy working the collodion process which is more fun anyway 😉
Ladies and gentlemen…it’s almost time for the KunstTour again! This year it will be held from the 27th til the 29th of May all throughout Maastricht. For more information visit their website, join their Facebook or follow them on Twitter 😉
The site says I’ll be located at the Frankenstraat 148 but that has changed. Me and my work will be on board of the Bastaboot where at the same time the interview with me for Basta will be presented. So…join us there. I think it’s gonna be fun! The boat is situated behind Landbouwbelang. Visit their website for more on that.