text cobra museum image roberto voorbij
‘Bouw in Beeld’ Prize
Back Home, the theme of the 2010 ‘Bouw in Beeld’ Prize has been visualised by the ten finalists for this exhibition. The ten finalists were chosen from a field of 135 entrants by: Marcel Feil, Curator at FOAM and additionally of this exhibition; photographers Marie-José Jongerius and Andrea Stultiens (winner of the 2009 Bouw in Beeld Prize); designer Hans Gremmen; and, Curator Frank van der Stok, who also served as the technical consultant to the final ten nominated photographers. The work in the exhibition was judged by an independent jury consisting of architect Mels Crouwel (Jury Chair); photographers Vivane Sassen and Paul Kooiker; the Director of the Museum for Photography in Berlin, Ludger Derenthal; and, Financial Times critic and former Head of Photography at Sotheby’s in London, Francis Hodgson.
The Back Home photographic exhibition will be on view first at the Cobra Museum in Amstelveen to August 1.
some highlights (r.v.);
If the city did not like where it was – California City
At the end of the 1940’s a Czech sociologist Nathan K. Mendelsohn developed plans for an ideal city: California City. With a circumference of 320 km2 the new city, situated between LA and San Francisco, was designed to be one of the largest cities of America. Streets and sewage system were laid and an artificial lake, a golf course, as well as a ‘Central Park’ were constructed. Parcels of land were established and model homes were built. But even now, California City is only the third largest city in California, with approximately 12,000 residents. The needs and desires of the possible residents appear not to conform with the pretensions of the city that was designed on the drawing table. Can a ‘home’ feeling be implanted, or is it something that the present citizens should create as time goes on? Is it ‘top-down’ or ‘bottom-up’? Many people live in California City, but the city sits on the foundation of the much larger city that was envisioned. The landscape looks strange and desolated as a result. The residents have been forced to adjust their dreams of the future. In a way that not many people expected, they have become pioneers – a way that perhaps fits with the stereotypical American need to create and defend their immediate environment.
In Groningen, close to the border with Germany, is a place called Ter Apel. There, right beside the Reception Centre (AC), is the location of the largest Temporary Emergency Accommodations (TNV) and Freedom Limitation Terrain (VBL) for asylum seekers in the Netherlands. During the Cold War, the area was a NATO base and an important employer in the area. With 900 paid employees, the AC is now the second-largest employer in the area. There’s a large turnover: approximately 300 new asylum seekers come to Ter Apel every week. Between the nearest bus stop and the AC there is a long, lonely road that every asylum seeker must walk down. Asylum seekers who live at the centre, or those who have had their application for asylum denied, also access the outside world via this road. The road was not made for this level of traffic, is not well-maintained, and is so narrow that even small cars have to go onto the verge in order to pass each other. It is on this road that people form every part of the world, with their few humble possessions, are literally swept back and forth between hope and disillusion, dream and bitter reality. In this way this special piece of asphalt becomes not only a metaphor for innumerable uprooted people worldwide, but also an image for the often tragic paths of life that people must travel.