Maartje Folkeringa’s work plays the non-verbal forms of communication in our social interaction, our behaviour and the symbols we use to express our worth. It plays with power relationships and discusses the status wherein we postulate our social hierarchy, often unconcious. The work entices us with familiar images of this interaction and with the totems people use to furnish their value.
This sculptural reality, however, does not identify or point a finger at anyone in particular but quietly strips away all decoration, thus exposing and neutralising the facade of human interaction. It reveals how our private allurements can transform us into wannabes, jerks or cowards, or how others fall prey to temptation: man in his trivial megalomania. By articulating and acting upon these symbols, she touches upon the whole unconscious kit and caboodle of social interaction. Her poking around allows us to laugh at ourselves.
Maartje: ‘During the making process, I never try to bend the work to my original intentions but rather enter into ‘negotiation’ with it. In this contra-intuitive game I gradually act more associatively; one turn in a certain direction leads to another. I strive for “air” in my work: playfulness and humour; a balance between sketchiness and accuracy, dark and light, and figuration and abstraction.’
In her games with non-verbal communication as manifested in our behaviour and in the objects we dress and surround ourselves with, we can sense what is going on without words. These are the unwritten rules that colour the spectacle of life itself. We use them to accentuate our power relationships. They provide colour because they form a grey area within our social interaction. Exactly because they are being applied unconsciously, they reveal more than we like them to.
As we familiarise ourselves with our demeanour, social relationships are ingrained only deeper. Non-verbal communication disciplines our interaction and covers our social fabric with a fine hue of repression. Civilisation is rooted in traditions, and conditions our behaviour: it can be understood as the forms and codes of conduct pertaining to a conservative Cultural Capital; a status that is historic and sticks to our unconscious behaviour for a long time. Decency here is moving between the facade that evolved from following tradition and the dynamics of our heart as it tries to adapt to social changes. Enough reason to put this on the map of our cultural horizon.
Production and presentation
In March, April and May, Maartje will be working at artists’ workshop Beeldenstorm. Simultaneously, an open studio space annex author’s exhibition will unfold itself in Onomatopee’s project space. In March we will continuously show a short documentary made by Jennifer Petterson in response to an acquisition by the Jan Cunen museum. In the basement we present images of her sources of inspiration. In April the exhibition will expand with works while the latest challenges are presented in parrallel. Existing works are shown while new works evolve based on the available sources of inspiration, on stories contributing their outlines and on public dialogues with invited speakers.
Folow her blog here
Al these activities will contribute to a publication we hope to realise, describing Folkeringa’s work that will put her challenges on the agenda and will be distributed as a source of inspiration in its own right.
March 1 – May 18
Open Sat. and Sun. 13:00 – 17:00 and on appointment
Finisage May 18, 15:00
Final opportunity to see Maartjes’ exhibition at Onomatopee plus an amazing visit to Beeldenstorm workplace at 16:00, offering the opportunity to see and experience Maartjes’ work in progress. Here, we will have a small talk on the process and the work. Drinks are, evidentley, to follow in Onomatopee after the tour.