After almost four years of running Platform57 and it’s vibrant programma of art projects, I will be focussing exclusively on my own work again.
When I was working in a temporary studio space in the schoolbuilding of the former Zuiderpark HBS in 2011, I fell in love with the building. The building was being rebuilt to become what is now Zuid57. I spoke to Paul Cornelissen, the first director of Theater Dakota, about the mix of theater, film, cultural courses and studio spaces and wondered what place contemporary art took in this mix. He said “Why don’t you write a plan?” Ofcourse I didn’t oversee all the consequenses when I founded the Platform57 foundation, before I knew I worked on it almost full time. (Photo: Johan Nieuwenhuize taking one of the 1000 portraits for Escamp Inside Out in Stadsdeelkantoor Escamp, September 2014)
Photos from Escamp Inside Out on the side walk at the Escamp Festival, Leyweg, The Hague, September 2014
The first board was formed by Caroline Wiedenhof, Paul Cornelissen and Onno Ephraim. Annelies Kronenberg took the place of Caroline in 2014. This group of people showed confidence in our projects and where always available for advise.
Our first exhibition, Plane Scape, had 1700 visitors and also the following projects could count on lots of attention from the public and press. Even the BBC and Discovery Channel visited us when Berndnaut Smilde came to show his Nimbus in 2013.
Plane Scape. Gym, Zuid57, January 2012
Installation with elastic band in darkened room, sound scape and projetion ©2009-2011 Wolfgang Bittner, Lyndsey Housden, Yoko Seyama, Jeroen Uyttendaele
Nimbus Platform57. ©2013 Berndnaut Smilde. Photo: Cassander Eeftinck Schattenkerk
Platform57 exists for more then three years now and we organised thirteen exhibitions, numerous artist talks, lectures and film evenings. In 2014 we organised our largest one of the most successful projects, the community art project Escamp Inside Out, with 1000 participants.
Group action Escamp Inside Out with 84 members of the Carmen choir of Dario Fo
Zuid57, September 2014 ©2014 Platform57
Approximately 400 kids and teachers from primary school De Krullevaar participated in Escamp Inside Out
Platform57 also started Collectie Escamp. With this project we executed restorations of two art works in public space, from the post war era. Together with a group of inhabitants from Escamp we compiled a bike trip past fifteen works of art in Escamp and realised a publication. December 12th 2014 this wonderful book – designed by Welmer Keesmaat – including the bike trip – designed by Carrie Zwarts – will be presented. It also contains a text by Marieke Kuipers, professor Cultural Heritage, and interviews with artists Christa van Santen (1932) and Toby Paterson (1974).
Cover Collectie Escamp – een introductie. ©2014 Platform57. Design KSMT visual design
I am very grateful to the current team of Platform57; Berit Piepgras, who worked on Platform57 with me from the very beginning, Jennefer Verbeek, Robin van Emden, Merel Volgers, Sandra Scholtes and Simone Noordermeer and everybody who made contributions to the team before; Beleke Bagchus, Anjulie van Romondt, Stefan Tuijt, Marije de Graaf, Hester van Kranendonk and Thomas Vroege.
I am also grateful to all financiers and sponsors for their trust in our projects; Gemeente Den Haag, Stroom Den Haag, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, Bouwfonds Cultuurfonds, Fonds1818 and Stadsdeel Escamp. Hemubo, Bouwmaat Zichtenburg and especially De Resolutie Rijswijk for their wonderful print work for Escamp Inside Out. Partners Vestia and Theater Dakota generously gave us space to develop and show our projects. Also the many volunteers and others who were engaged contributed a very large part to Platform57.
Untitled installation for Platform57 on the square of Zuid57 ©2013 Krijn de Koning
I got the chance to collaborate with wonderful artist, without whom there wouldn’t have been a Platform57: Wolfgang Bittner, Lyndsey Housden, Yoko Seyama, Jeroen Uyttendaele, Hans van der Maas, Alette Wttewaall, TINKEBELL., Ibrahim R. Ineke, Niels Post, Thijs Ebbe Fokkens, Harold de Bree, Valerie van Leersum, Berndnaut Smilde, Maurice Bogaert, Ila Bêka, Louise Lemoine, Mathijs Lieshout, Hans Wilschut, Zachary Formwalt, Gerard Holthuis, Krijn de Koning, Christian van der Kooij, Henk Augustijn, Nadine Stijns, JR (Inside Out project), Lidewij Kalfsterman, Noël Loozen, Sarah Carlier, Christa van Santen and Toby Paterson.
Hans Wilschut during the installation of his semi permanent work System as Second Skin. ©2013 Hans Wilschut
It has been a wonderful time and I couldn’t have done it without all these wonderful people. Platform57 will not continue, but part of the team will proceed with Collectie Escamp. The website www.platform57.nl will remain online, and the archive will stay availabe.
I will be focussing on developing new autonomous projects of my own and on executing assignments. See my sites www.johannieuwenhuize.nl (this site) and my new website for assignments: www.studiojohannieuwenhuize.nl.
Johan Nieuwenhuize, December 2nd 2014