Sunday, November 11, 2012



One final bike ride around the hood and a few small galleries.

A visit to Maartje ten Hoorn and Jos Smeets's home for an amazing night of food, wine and conversation and a visit to his studio next door.  They live in a converted old school which now houses artists and studios at reasonable rents.  Maartje is the violinist who we saw perform in a small gallery in the Jordan.  Jos is a visual artist who works with metal and found objects.  He is also a drawer/painter.

Great light!
The loft studio office

Back to the Stedelijk for a final visit.  This is the modern art museum that has been closed for eight years.  Paintings, posters and ceramics.

Dan Flavin's installation welcomes you.

Karel Appel's painted room.

It is a teapot and it's tea cozy is fur.

They have an amazing poster collection....

Karel Appel's mural
the other side of the Appel's mural
Went to a show called Affordable Art which was held at the Westergasfabriek Culture Park for a weekend.  The art is priced between E100 and E5000 and all mediums.  We both felt that the quality of the work was very high and prices were good.  There were hundreds of artists and a party atmosphere!

roof of the giant old gas tank

turtle huh!

wanted to buy this painting but it was huge!
okay weird but kind of fascinating....combining taxidermy and ceramics


Had a couple cities on our list to visit before we left and Utrecht was one of them.  The Centraal Art Museum is in an old former medieval monastery.   They show visual art, fashion and have an ancient viking boat.  They also have a large collection of Gerrit Reitveld's furniture and drawings.

local church
plaster wall piece with faces smashed off during the religious change
Centraal Museum
Centraal Museum
women would meticulously re-create their house by having a doll house built  
detail doll house
made of plastic
glass drums

a small part of an installation of paper mache and wood
ceramic if you can believe it!
candles are put in the long heaters above and drip on to the floor and make these lovely towers...smells great too
jeans mobile
Gerrit Reitveld's furniture

a room where you can try out his furniture
love his drawings...had never seen them before

Utrecht has wonderful small shops and along the canals there are still the basement doors once used for delivery from boats for the stores above.  Now they are small stores, galleries, restaurants and studios.

Our final town to visit was Enkhuizen which has an amazing art gallery which also has a giant collection of canal work boats, fishing boats and sail boats.  Arnt was in heaven!  They also have a complete walled village with actual small houses, barns and shops brought from all over Holland.  They have animals like sheep and goats and the shops still make things the old way, like cooperages (barrels), black smithing, fishing gear, etc.  The town itself is wonderful with canals, lovely restaurants and cafe's, small shopping area and of course a few churches.

entrance gate to the town
ceramic installation of broken delft pottery

everyone out on the ice including small boats with runners added on
you can view the boats from three floors
oh oh he found one he wants
fabric cap worn by women in a small village
beautiful colours in this painting
great poster for advertising Holland
the old village with boats, houses and shops

the party store

demo so you can understand how the windmill moves the water
the crows were having a great dusk flight
great seaport with old boats and modern windmills
installation room painting by artist in the old village

The NP40 Gallery (where we had our show) was having a show by Eric Knoote who is also one of the owners of the gallery with Rob.  He was having a show of work that he had made in the last three years. 
We bought one of his paintings and we also bought a new Rob van der Schoor.

Eric showed sculpture, paintings and drawings

this is the Eric Knoote painting we bought

Rob' newest paintings

wanted this one but was a commission
this is the Rob van der Schoor we bought
Our neighbours Mark, Cynthia and their 5 year old daughter Lotus, who live in our favourite boat on our canal invited us over for coffee and a tour.  They have owned the boat for 8 years and the fellow before them had lived there over 40 years.  They have done a lot of work and it is a lovely home. 

Arnt with Lotus in the original living space the owner would have lived in with his family, now a bedroom and playhouse
original stairs to exit the living space...all the rest of the boat would have been motor and cargo space
Cynthia in the kitchen...this boat even has a dishwasher and clothes washer

Mark outside the door to Lotus's loft bed and playroom

Our friend Jelle Kampen invited us to visit his studio to see his maquette for an upcoming installation.  His studio is in a old hospital complex.  The original hospital had several buildings and his studio is in the one converted to artist studios.  Across the way in another building of the original complex is his home which is shared with his wife Lucy, a jeweller and his two daughters and is offered at reasonable rents to artists and others.  Another building directly across from his studio are lovely flats at E1,000,000 to purchase.  The building was saved and they live in a wonderfully eclectic neighbourhood which is a 3 minute bike ride from our apartment.

The cardboard on the floor will be the final size of the pieces

love this hairdo template which you will see in the the next painting
He has an idea to show these portraits in one of the old canal houses and replace or combine with the traditional portraits from that period of time.
Love this painting as his explanation was, no matter what is happening in the world or your personal life, just hang up coloured lights and all will be well!

So to sum up.....our trip definitely started with an agenda because as many of you know I love a good list!  We completed the list and did more and more and more!  We learned tons and are totally inspired about so much!

Rules and regulations:  Not sure how many of you know about the Schengen area in Europe...not to be confused with the European Union.
"The Schengen Area comprises the territories of twenty-six European countries that have implemented the Schengen Agreement signed in the town of Schengen, Luxembourg, in 1985. The Schengen Area operates very much like a single state for international travel with external border controls for those travelling in and out of the area, but with no internal border controls when travelling between Schengen countries."
So we are now banished from 26 European countries as we did not have a visa to stay 6 months.  As a foreign tourist you can only stay three months and then not come back for 90 days.  We got detained at the border when leaving and they are deciding our case which could result in minimum 2 year banishment or more.  We will phone an embassy in the new year to find out what they decided.  We can only go to England, Ireland, Cyprus, Romania and Bulgaria!

A few things that we noticed while living in Amsterdam.....

  •  A jar of peas can be mistaken for capers
  • You can bike many kilometers when the land is flat
  •   Bikes always and I mean always have the right away…a giant excavator truck stopped for us out in the country so we could bike over the bridge
  •  The canals have special areas for the ducks, geese and swans to nest….the birds sometimes clean up the canal by adding pieces of trash to their nests.
  •  When Amsterdam people move house they take the fridge, stove, lighting and if you can believe it, sometimes the floor!!!
  • Women do not pee on the public bathroom seats…ever!
  •  The canal boats are taken to the shipyard every five years for the bottom to be painted ... the house boats are sitting on cement and don't have to be cleaned or painted.
  • It is a small country with great public transit and every village, small and large seems magical with their thatched roofs, dikes, 2 to 3 art museums and 2 to 3 churches.  You can take your bike on the train for a small fee.
  • The Dutch are house proud about their country....when we mention a small village or city that we are going to visit they have nothing but good to say and give us amazing insider information.
  • The Dutch are incredibly generous people who speak their mind about issues close to their heart.
  • The Dutch love cafe culture...when we left Amsterdam it was getting kind of cold but they were all sitting out side if it was not raining and in the summer everyone is outside on canal boats, cafes, sailing or biking!
  • Arnt's favourite saying when comparing countries "All mayors should come to Amsterdam"  re: biking, rules, garbage, art, safety, etc, etc.
   I want to send a special thanks to Rob van der Schoor and Rina Koper as without their friendship, guidance and amazing help this trip would not have happened as well as it did.  Lots 'o' love to you both!

Thanks to you all for following this blog about our adventures in Europe.  We will keep you posted about what we have done with all this new information!

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