Jeroen de Rijke, Willem de Rooj

Cat. K21 Düsseldorf

Exhibition catalogue, edited by Julian Heynen
texts (German/English/Italian) by Sabeth Buchmann, Anne Goldstein, Willem de Rooij and A. Viliani
256 p with 150 coloured illustrations
280 x 215 mm, softcover with dustjacket

ISBN 978-3-936859-83-6


Mandarin Ducks 

Since the start of their collaboration in 1994 Jeroen de Rijke (1970-2006) and Willem de Rooij (*1969) have realized a select corpus of 35mm and 16mm films, photographs, objects, installations, and printed matters. Their collaborative work analysis the conventions of presentation and representation, and explores the areas of tension between socio-political and autonomous image production. The exhibition at K21 is conceived as the counterpart to twin exhibition in Mambo, Bologna, scheduled for April 2008. Each of these two exhibitions shows a different selection of de Rijke / de Rooij’s work, contextualized by documentation and source material, and accompanied by a comprehensive overview of the both work in a new exhibition catalogue. By partial reconstruction of previous exhibitions within both exhibitions a complex web of cross-references is developed, making for a deeper understanding of de Rijke / de Rooij’s artistic and programmatic concerns. The exhibition at K21 centers on two of the most important films and a slide installation: »Mandarin Ducks« (2005) – first screened at the Dutch Pavilion at the 51st Venice Biennale – as well as »The Point of Departure« (2002) and »Orange« (2004). »Mandarin Ducks« is a highly stylized conversation piece, in which several people negotiate physical and emotional space within a modernist domestic interior. The monologues and dialogues intersperse private and public topics in a style that is both icy and dramatic. In »The Point of Departure« the eye of the camera systematically explores the internal and external structures of an Oriental carpet. As striking and visually precise as this investigation is, it ultimately runs up against the limits of the possibility of understanding this exotic object. Finally, Orange is nothing more than a projection of various monochromatic hues of orange. At the same time, however, this abstract, almost hallucinatory modulation of a single color triggers associations with the pure ideology of Dutch national color.

K21 Kunstsammlungen Nordrhein-Westfalen Düsseldorf, 8/122007–13/4/2008
MAMbo Bologna, 20/4–8/6/2008