Lidwien van de Ven

The event that echoes throughout Lidwien van de Ven's new book is the 2002 murder of Pim Fortuyn, the Dutch right-wing populist. As Fortuyn's intellectual heirs, Geert Wilders and Thilo Sarrazin have a spectral presence in this publication, produced by Witte de With (and edited with great acumen and patience by Amira Gad) in the context of a series of artists'  books focussing on the institution's local context.

Under the perhaps deliberately anodyne title Rotterdam: Sensitive Times, the photo sequence that runs through the book combines images of manifestations in the immediate aftermath of Fortuyn's death with numerous other events, across Europe and elsewhere, including a number of extreme-right and Muslim demonstrations. I focus on such manufactured or staged events in my short and condensed text in the book, "Lidwien van de Ven: Photo Opportunities."

Third Text: Mutations

Issue no. 120 of Third Text, edited by T.J. Demos, is dedicated to the politics of ecology. It comes with an open-access online supplement that includes an article that is based on parts of chapter six of my upcoming book, History in Motion. Titled "Mutations and Misunderstandings," this essay can be found here

MA Programme Visual Arts, Media and Architecture

The international deadline for applying for VU University's two-year research master's programme VAMA (Visual Arts, Media and Architecture) is April 1, or March 1 if you are also applying for a VU scholarship.

See the announcement here.


Image: Bik Van der Pol, Accumulate, Collect, Show (2011).

Open update

Recently it was announced that Open, the journal on art and the public domain that has been axed in its old form due to the Dutch culture wars funding cuts, will continue as an online platform in collaboration with Stroom in The Hague. In a situation in which the chairman of the Dutch section of AICA (the international art critics' association) prides himself on not knowing the meaning of the word discursive, this is very good news. At least one crucial context in which critical thought is not ostracized will continue to exist, however fragile and underfunded. While much of the content from Open issues published between 2004 and 2010 is online in PDF form, editor Jorinde Seijdel and web designer Niels Schrader are working on a searchable online database—a "living archive" that will the basis of a site that is to include new online editions.

Image: a selection of key texts from Open was recently published by nai010 publishers.