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Rijksmuseum puts names to our slavery past and the effect is stunning

It is very easy not to dwell on things. For instance, I learned at school that we sailed to the East to get nutmeg and pepper. Stuff that just rolled off the trees into the boats there and that we could sell very expensively here. Sugar, another thing. That came to us from plantations just like that,... 

Commercial interest in test events hurts confidence. That test result is already in.

Rather unexpectedly, it was announced this week that cultural and entertainment venues will be test sites for reopening society next month. It came rather out of the blue, as everyone was still working on petitions and other pleas to reopen cultural buildings. After all, they have their corona protocols in place there better than the Albert Heijn on my corner.... 

Amsterdam Museum presents exhibition Golden Coach - 18 June 2021 to 27 February 2022 

The exhibition The Golden Coach opens at the Amsterdam Museum on Friday 18 June. After a restoration of more than five years, the Golden Coach is back on public display for the first time. The carriage will be on loan to the Amsterdam Museum until February 2022. With this, the carriage temporarily returns to the city that used it in... 

(Update: government still announces extra money.) Dear government, Dutch culture is not a question of supply and demand, but of what we are or are not.

Update Wednesday 15-4, 16:00: this afternoon, the government has decided to come over as yet with additional schemes for the cultural sector, which are now no longer taken out of the culture budget. Apparently, the massive pressure helped. We will let you know when more is known about it. Update Wednesday 15-4, 20:00: Drop in the ocean arrived, leaving the below message only.... 

Into the bookstore with a shopping basket. Booksellers are grasping at the straw called behavioural change.

Last December, we had no internet and no TV/netflix for a week. The Customer Disconnection Department of KPN, formerly XS4All, had not understood that a broken cable in our neighbourhood could have had anything to do with it. One of the funny effects of these fibre-less days was that I finished reading four books. Something I normally do only on... 

The flip side of Fair Practice: Kunstenbond in impossible split after 'relaunch' Utrecht Centre for the Arts

'Poignant to see how a lack of decisiveness, clarity and leadership - at both the Utrecht municipality and the management of the KLA - could lead to a split and even rupture among employees.' Karin Boelhouwer of the Kunstenbond is stuck with it, and she has a point. The Utrecht Centre for the Arts (UCK) recently went officially bankrupt. A major... 

Colonisation is not a relationship. But we still need to establish that relationship, this Holland Festival showed.

Post-colonial criticism and reflection ran like a thread through this year's Holland Festival programme. Not only William Kentrigde and Faustin Linyekula, the associate artists with whom the festival's programmers collaborated, their work addresses the devastating effects of centuries of Western European trade and commerce. In reframing political and social history and reclaiming... 

'When you bring back the songs, you bring back the people, you bring back everything'. Why Amsterdam Roots should be proud of coming Jeremy Dutcher.

28-year-old Jeremy Dutcher is a sensation. With his reinterpretation of native songs by Canadian Indians, he won the Canadian equivalent of the Grammy last year; names like Arcade Fire, Feist and Kaytranada preceded him. Amsterdam Roots Festival is now bringing award-winning Canadian musician Jeremy Dutcher to the Netherlands for a performance at the Bimhuis on 10 July 2019. When... 

7 reasons to (re)read Elsschot's novels

With his new book The Discovery of Elsschot, Elsschot biographer Vic van de Reijt wants to get the whole of the Netherlands reading Elsschot's books. Seven reasons why these classics are timeless fun. 1. You can finish any of Elsschot's books in one day 'In 1970 I bought his Collected Works for nine guilders, I remember it well. At the time... 

Is the boom in the art trade really about art? The European Parliament has its doubts.

Tackling tax fraud and money laundering, as we reported earlier, also affects the arts sector. Money can no longer be hidden in shadowy limited companies behind foundations, which in turn hide behind other companies and individuals. Everything has to be transparent from now on. A new measure was added last week, according to Artnet. The European union is going to introduce a... 

Peppie & UBO: privacy concerns for business leaders and directors. (Why anti-money laundering policies can wreak havoc on culture)

Our government leaders, united in Europe, have come up with something to combat the masking of corruption. It is called UBO register. The Netherlands is also going to introduce it in the near future. This has consequences, also for cultural foundations and associations. Because every organisation has to determine who is a UBO (Ultimate Beneficial Owner). This causes some complications. In the cultural sector, it is... 

Demise of VVD culture spokesman during budget debate in St Nicholas mood, with surprise for PvdD

A little pity was in order during the debate on the culture budget in the Lower House. Thierry Aartsen, the VVD's brand-new culture spokesperson, still hadn't done his homework and therefore got terrible on his mitre from fellow culture spokesmen in the Lower House. And then also from the minister. Was he allowed to speak around 11... 

ZEP takes on the sacred cows of love with comedy HABIB. (Why Rascal should just come and watch)

So certain words are taboo. Moroccan Said explains that his ideal woman has to be a virgin, chaste, and so should not let him ... well, that is. That word you are not allowed to say. The Turkish Evrim thinks that's big nonsense again. Why not call a spade a spade? In Habib, the latest performance by theatre group ZEP, it is all about... 

In Bruges, everything that could go wrong went wrong. Painter Pieter Pourbus escaped by marrying conveniently. (And being stone-faced.)

The (in Flanders) famous portrait painter Pieter Pourbus is from Gouda. You have never heard of him. Soon you will. Museum Gouda is bringing the first Pieter Pourbus exhibition to the Netherlands from 17 February 2018 to 17 June 2018. In preparation for this, you should first visit the Groeninge Museum in Bruges. In the unabashedly burgundy World Heritage city, the exhibition Pieter Pourbus and... 

Per-Sonat sings songs from Luther's time: surprisingly fresh and current

Bis an der Welt ihr Ende is the poetic title of a CD by Per-Sonat featuring German songs from the time of the Reformation. This ensemble of mezzo-soprano Sabine Lutzenberger focuses on music from the Middle Ages and Renaissance. This CD follows the development of German song from church reformer Martin Luther to the composer Johann Hermann Schein.... 

5 Bargains the cockerels left behind at major auction houses

It was ball again just before summer at Christie's, Sotheby's, Phillips and Bonhams. Contemporary art auctions are the showpieces of see-and-be-seen. And the place to throw loads of money. For the happy few, in other words. Or better: a pissing contest for men (mostly - really - men) who get the measure of hedge funds and mega-corporations. Score-driving, in other words;... 

Baudet's art vision blamed for old battle between Rotterdam and Leiden

For those who like to be around art, politics has become a bit more fun again, since 15 March. Since the 2017 elections, Thierry Baudet has been in the House of Representatives. Thierry Baudet knows a lot about art, he thinks, and we will come to know it, too. In fact, Thierry Baudet is the best thing about art these days... 

Ascent, Fiona Tan, video artwork of cinematic allure

Fiona Tan delivers a feature-length video artwork with Ascent

The video artwork 'Ascent' is one of Fiona Tan's most recent works. Ascent is a feature-length video artwork: 1 hour and 17 minutes[ref]A work resulting from a special commission from the Izu Photo Museum in Japan[/ref]. You may already be familiar with this artist's work[ref]The now 50-year-old Fiona Tan is "no ordinary Indian girl", born in Pekan... 

Movies that Matter: 'feel bad' films make a 'feel good' festival together

These are bleak times. A few days after the opening night of the Movies that Matter festival (MTM) in The Hague, the world was rocked by the attacks in Brussels. For an event that focuses on human rights issues, a sign that the violent consequences of international conflicts seem to be getting closer. This raises the question of whether an audience that is... 

Legendary alto Aafje Heynis died

'So, that one is hanging again', the alto Aafje Heynis is said to have exclaimed after a performance of Bach's St Matthew Passion. The statement is probably apocryphal and has also been attributed to soprano Jo Vincent, but fits perfectly with her typically Dutch down-to-earthness*, which was at odds with her heartfelt performances of very diverse music. In 1983, she quit until... 

Mea culpa! - Forgot to check the facts

Mea culpa and action 'It only happens when you fall on your face.' This quote by artist Job Koelewijn in De Volkskrant has hung on my toilet door for years. One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a journalist is not checking facts. And OuiJAYes that mistake I have thus made: this writing creative did not check the facts.... 


World art trade grows 7% to 51 billion euros

The crisis is over. Especially if you are in the fine art business. In 2014, the global art market grew by 7% from the peak year of 2013. In total, the art trade turned over a value of 51 billion euros last year, making that market almost as big as the economy of Uzbekistan. The internationally authoritative website artnet reported that today 

Indian dream shattered during Writers Unlimited

Radbraken. This is how it works: you tie someone to a sturdy cartwheel, then break all his or her bones by beating them country-wide with clubs, after which you weave the mangled limbs around the spokes of the wheel. It is essential that the punished person undergoes all this alive and conscious. After the treatment, you bring the wheel with... 

Speculating with grant money. Is that allowed?

Boymans is proud. The Rotterdam museum has been able to snatch up a very nice statue, for 123,000 euros less than the asking price. And all because they bought it via an option construction. Writes NRC. That option construction did cost 22,000 euros. Money they would have lost if the dollar rate had fallen instead of risen. It is already... 

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