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Summer at TENT: 'Manifestation on the Other Side of Reality'
Summer Carnival Rotterdam rehearsal in TENT (photo Sander van Wettum) (3)

ROTTERDAM.- With the manifestation On The Other Side Of Reality on Saturday 25 July, TENT leaves its institutional walls to take part in Rotterdam’s Summer Carnival Street Parade with a float and procession designed by fashion designer Marga Weimans. After the Street Parade has taken place, the artistic float and procession are transformed into a monumental installation at TENT.

The Summer Carnival was first organized in the 80’s as an equivalent to the Caribbean Carnival, and has since grown into one of the largest cultural events within the Netherlands. The cultural background of the Rotterdam Summer Carnival closely relates to the Dutch colonial past and migratory history. With On The Other Side Of Reality, TENT unites the world of contemporary art with the notion of carnival: ‘high’ and ‘low’ culture; inside and outside; museum and society − all meet each other through this encounter.

By employing an art project to take part in a street festival, the opportunity arises to explore the Street Parade as a presentational space for contemporary culture, while the conceptual framework of the traditional art space is temporarily left behind. What does it mean to venture beyond the institutional walls into a popular manifestation that is preeminently perceived as a celebration of culture of the ‘other’?

Street Parade and exhibition by Marga Weimans
The well-known fashion designer Marga Weimans (Rotterdam) designed a float and procession that took part in the Street Parade of the Summer Carnival on Saturday 25 July. Fashion, art, performance and theatre met each other in an all-encompassing concept, which is heavily influenced by Weimans’ personal background and conceptions of the urbanite as an ‘agent of change’. The notions of transition and transformation lie at the heart of the project: a group of forty young dancers represented a transformational process that began with clean, architectural forms and moves towards the exuberance of the Caribbean Carnival. They moved from framed to liberated and transformed duty into passion, uniformity into multiplicity and raw material into lusty attire.

After the Parade, the float and procession will transform into a monumental art installation at TENT.

To realize this project, Weimans collaborates with composer Rutger Zuydervelt
(Machinefabriek), choreographer Amber Vineyard (House of Vineyard/HipHopHuis) and scenographer Joris van Oosterwijk. This project marked the first time for Weimans to develop such an extensive and multidisciplinary project on the invitation of an art institution.

Talent project The End Of Normal with Mette Sterre
In the context of the exhibition space, performance artist Mette Sterre (Rotterdam, London) collaborated throughout the summer with a group of talented young people in order to create a float and procession inspired by the notions of identity, masquerade, and performance. Sterre studied Performance Design at the prestigious art college Central Saint Martins, London. Her work is currently on view at different venues in both Europe and the United States, such as Watermill Center in New York, Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space, Oude Kerk in Amsterdam and SCHUNCK* in Heerlen. The End of Normal will premiere in September during the festival Kunst in het Witte de Withkwartier in Rotterdam.

In September, TENT organizes a final symposium to further explore the cultural and political implications inherent to the connection between contemporary art and carnival. To which extent is the Caribbean Carnival as a sign of protest or otherness relevant within the contemporary city? This symposium functions as a platform to evaluate the questions that TENT adresses to the arts, the city Rotterdam, the public, and itself.

Janneke van der Putten – All Begins With A
16 July – 28 September 2015
Opening Thursday 16 July, 20:00

TENT presents the debut exhibition by Janneke van der Putten (1985, Rotterdam), in which the artist shows several recent works that explore the relation between sound, the voice and singing, the body, and time and space by drawing on her personal experiences, corporeality and her voice. The lengthy walks, strolls and studies of listening are an important starting point for her work. She instrumentalizes her voice in order to interpret and scan a variety of spaces and situations, and by doing so, enabling the often hidden characteristics to be experienced. The rhythm of nature and the transition from day to night are important aspects in her practice. The exhibition opened on the day of the new moon and closes on the day of the full moon.

In a sense, Van der Putten practices a form of psychogeography. She establishes relations between herself and the external reality, such as a graveyard in Rotterdam, the island Vassivière, the urban environment of Lima or the desert coast of Peru − all in direct relationship to for example birdsong, or gunshots or echo’s. In these given and coincidental situations, and the concurrence of circumstances within these situations, she creates gatherings in which the vocal range is tested and movements in or around the landscape, either by canoe, by foot, alone or together. The arising echo’s, reactions and sounds from the surrounding are all recorded. In this interaction between the human and non-human, the documentation and its artistic manipulations, all voices and responses come together: both the human voice and the responsive surroundings with its objects and entities that move within.

Janneke van der Putten graduated with Honours from the department of Textile at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam, and finished a Master Artistic Research at the Royal Academy of Fine Art and the Royal Conservatoire in the Hague.

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