Rotterdam Residency

The red pin marks my current position. I’m an international guest at Foundation BAD in Southern Rotterdam – an artist run extravaganza of a place. Based in an old school, that was originally squatted, it now provides both studios and homes for 30ish people who share and co-organise. I am here for a month to make work that builds on the recently completed ACE project and the Venice work before that – improvised landscapes and approaches that are reactions/acclimatisation to some kind of stress. Rotterdam is the result of a unique history and ambition and its stress is yet to found by me. However by considering the other sites ive looked at something begins to be reveale. Unlike Venice it doesn’t feel fragile or tramped as a ruin afloat. It doesn’t feel like Jaywick battling poverty and the sea or the Houseboats of Heachem cobbled together. Instead I see the world [being a port perhaps this is obvious – mix of people, movement of stuff] or better still a replication of the world – a substitute improvised world? Sveltana Alpers in her great book The Art of Describing said something about Dutch artworks meanings are not to be read through their narratives but seen through the description of whats already here. Seems to make sense here too?