Alles Stroomt*

Photo by Sander Heezen

What a wonderful, crazy year this is. After my England adventures, I had one more to look forward to, Into The Great Wide Open*** on the Wadden Island Vlieland. 
I never been to a Wadden Island before and put it last year on my wish-list for this year. Lucky me, my project got selected in April to be shown during the festival in September.

In the beginning of May al artists where invited to check out their locations, meet the forester Erik and get a small preview with Here Comes The Summer. It was pretty cold, and being home only two weeks after Cambridge it felt a bit strange being away again to another island. But I also felt so fortunate that this was and is my job!The project idea I send in was to make a ricecarpet that would be best visible from a high lookout. The pattern for the carpet would be based on a local popular motif. During my visit to the island and afterwards I gathered a lot of information about Vlieland and the specific location for my carpet called 'Sjouwersmanbol' (something like "Porters-man-bulwark"). On this viewpoint is now an ex-NAVO range. From this high steel construction you get a great view over the island, the sea channel between Vlieland and Terschelling, the sandbank Richel and a lot of water. The natural viewpoint was used by cargo porters to spot the incoming ships through the sea channel. They then had enough time to run towards the harbor and secure the shipment.
Looking at old maps and "spekmatten"** I noticed one clear motif, a symbol used on every map and I also found it on a lot of other things on Vlieland: A Windrose.****

All pointing North, I used 4 different motifs to make 35 windroses out of cooked rice. During the three festival days, 5 till 7 September 2014, the ricecarpet slowly disappeared while the birds eat from it. 
Below the making-of and audience taking a closer look. If you made a picture of "Alles Stroomt", please share it with me, thanks!


Audience taking a closer look


Would like to end this post with a special thanks to my assistent Koen de Wit who spend hours cooking all the rice for me, thanks honey!

* "Panta rhei" / "Everything flows"
** "Spekmatten" are floor mats made by sailors. On board they kept the needle in the grease so it wouldn't rust.
*** On the Into The Great Wide Open site my work was featured as 'Oogst van de dag 1
**** Previous works inspired by windroses can be found in the blogpost "Was ist ist, was nicht ist ist möglich" on De reis naar Batik & on YouTube see "Dance in a ricecarpet"
***** Last photo is by nicolettepet on Istagram

Practices of Sustainability, Étude #1 and Étude #2

In July I had the great privilege to make art in the public space in London. Curator Vanessa Saraceno, whom I met and worked with in Cambridge, invited me to make the first projects for her practice-based Doctorate research "Sustainability. A New Sensitivity in Contemporary Art" at University of the Arts of London. 
"Practices of Sustainability" explores the potential of socially-engaged art practices for the amelioration of our relation with the social and natural environment. With these first two projects, Étude #1 and Étude #2, we explored how an art project can be sustainable in subject, performance, organization and preparation.
I made the works on location using materials, waste and organic, we collected in the neighborhood the week before the event. So that part was covered, but we also had skype talks before I arrived, making plans for the PR, whether printing a poster can be done sustainable, that I would take the train and how do you make people interact, or at least think about their practices of sustainability.

For the short time span we had to complete this project, we started talking about the idea in Cambridge, we explored a lot that can be useful for and hopefully will lead to an Étude #3 and #4 and so on!

Étude #1

On monday I arrived and the next day we started our project. We asked at pubs and restaurants around Blackfriars Bridge if they would like to help us realize an artwork by collecting things they normally would throw away, like bottle-caps and plastic forks. The response was very nice, the managers or bartenders let us tell our story, Vanessa is very good in this, and they were quite surprised when we asked in the end for their sponsorship in the form of their waste. Most of them responded with 'Of course' and by showing how they already separate their trash.
On friday we went back to pick up what they had collected. To our surprise almost all had something for us. We were welcomed with "Oh the ladies for the trash" and found they had placed a bag or cardboard box with instructions on them for their co-workers. 
I spend the evening separating the materials by color, kind and size and getting nervous for the next day. 
On Saturday 19 July at 11am I started making the temporary carpet on the Blackfriars Bridge. I worked with bottle-caps in Cambridge before, but combined it there with organic materials. I choose to make simple shapes, fish or bombs, repeating them till I ran out of materials. To secure the work I used sand collected at the river bank. 
While I was making Vanessa explained her research to people and asked them about their thoughts on sustainability.
Still can't believe how normal it was to make a work on a bridge in London.

Étude #2

Mirroring the project on Blackfriars Bridge, we went door to door in the surroundings of the Victoria park to ask residents for any organic material they would like to offer for me to realize my artwork. Totally different from the response around Blackfriars Bridge, most people didn't have the time to hear our story. Or even open the door. It was hard work and we spent two afternoons ringing doorbells in tropical weather. It tested our limits, but it was also a valuable experience. When doors did open and people made some time for us, it felt great when they went into their kitchen to see what they had for us. 
On Saturday and Sunday morning I prepared all the food so birds could eat it as well. Victoria park has the nickname "People's park", but is the park a place where only people can enjoy themselves or is it urban nature where animals can live and be, next to humans? With this question we started our project on Sunday 20 July.
For the temporary carpet I made stencils based on feeding signs for ducks and garlands of people holding hands with birds. I made the carpet out of all sorts of organic materials that the birds could eat. 
When I finished laying the materials, we waited for the birds. Every time they got close to it, people, mosty with dogs, would pass by. Most times unaware of the carpet next to their feet and of scaring the birds away. The people who noticed the carpet saw the pattern of humans and birds quite fast and realized what it was for. "Look it's people! And what is that, oh a bird. Oh it's food for the birds", but we had to conclude that a park is not for sharing with animals, at least not the 'wild' ones.

For more about Practices of Sustainability
in the press release Practices of Sustainability
on Facebook


Between my collaboration project "Practices of Sustainability" with Vanessa Saraceno and my holiday to visit my dear friend and colleague Emmy Dijkstra, I made a textile design for a great competition.

The TextielMuseum in Tilburg is now showing the wonderful exhibition "Artist Textiles. Picasso to Warhol" which I saw in London at the Fashion and Textile Museum.
The exhibition is full of textile designs made by artists, some are shown hanging on the wall, or turned into great dresses from the fifties & sixties.

Now the TextielMuseum invited artists to send in their own textile design. A design, minimal size 1 by 1 meter, that is based on printing techniques. The winners get their designs printed on fabric!
A jury will select the final winners, but you also have the chance to show your design in the museum!!!
To help me get selected, you can 'vote' for my design by liking, sharing, google plussing or pinning it with the social media tools below on my page. 
Go to this page, check out my design and use the social media tools to vote!

Thank you!

Practices of Sustainability

On Saturday, 19 July 2014 and Sunday, 20 July 2014, Dutch artist Sabine Bolk will present to the city of London her new public installations, Étude #1 and Étude #2.

On Saturday, 19 July, from 11am to 4pm, Étude #1 will consist of a series of sculptures occupying the pedestrian area of Blackfriars Bridge. In one of the noisiest and most heavily transited area of London, signs and symbols of British visual culture will be deployed to address issues of sustainability in the urban environment.

In the days before the unveiling of the installation, the artist will stage a ritual in the vicinity of the bridge, asking residents and passers by to share any object they want to offer, and inviting them to the unveiling of the sculptures on Saturday. 

The artist will work with the collected objects, and the community will be invited to participate by sharing memories and experiences on the social sustainability of such a transitory area, in the slowness and intensity of an art experience. The temporality of this work will address sustainability as a vulnerable concept, inviting people to reflect on the consequences of their actions on their own environment, and imagine a different experience of the metropolitan everyday. 

On Sunday, 20 July 2014, from 11am to 4pm, Sabine Bolk will present Étude #2, an invitation to non-human species to re-appropriate Victoria Park, an area of the city that is meant to be a free space for both animals and people. Étude #2 will invite people to re-think the visual culture of British rituals to inspire an alternative knowledge that may revitalise our relation with nature, and infuse in the community a different sensitivity towards sustainability. 

Mirroring the project on Blackfriars bridge, in the days before the unveiling of the installation, the artist will go from door to door in the surroundings of the park to ask residents for any organic material they would like to offer, while inviting them to the unveiling of the installation on Sunday. 
Combining the donated materials with birdseeds, the installation invites members of the community to share their thoughts if and when the birds interact with the sculptures, turning the project into an investigation of sustainability in everyday life.

Rituals address values that are contradictory, and meanings that are volatile and constantly negotiated. They offer an opportunity to see how society structures itself, and relates to its environment. Embodying sustainability as a contested concept, the curatorial research project Practices of Sustainability explores the potential of socially-engaged art practices for the amelioration of our relation with the social and natural environment. The project is part of Vanessa Saraceno’s practice-based Doctorate research Sustainability. A New Sensitivity in Contemporary Art at University of the Arts of London. 

Etude#1 and #2 have been generously supported by JAWS, Journal of Art Writing by Students.

Into The Great Wide Open

Op woensdag 4 juni ben ik aangekondigd als onderdeel van het Kunstprogramma tijdens het festival Into The Great Wide Open op Vlieland van 5 t/m 7 september.
Ik kijk er ontzettend naar uit, wat een eer om daar aan mee te mogen doen!

Bij het betreden van de uitkijktoren wordt er een wit patroon zichtbaar in het landschap. Naarmate je hoger en hoger klimt, lijken de verschillende patronen steeds meer een geheel te vormen. Een groot tapijt, gemaakt van rijst, bedekt de ondergrond. Vroeger was de uitkijktoren een plek waar men uitkeek of wachtte op de binnenkomende schepen. In september kijk je uit over de patronen, geïnspireerd op zogeheten spekmatten, een soort kleedjes die zeevaarders maakten in de maanden aan land.

Een hele stille bezoeker zal na even wachten worden beloond met het aanschouwen van de verdwijning van het tapijt; het materiaal waarvan het gemaakt wordt is immers ook voer voor de vogels op het eiland.

Alles stroomt en niets blijft.

Meer info op

Kunst en Bomen, making of boomkleed 'Acer Ginnala'

Vanaf woensdagavond 14 mei is mijn boomkleed voor de Acer Ginnala op het St. Jansplein in Moergestel te zien. Het boomkleed 'Acer Ginnala' maakt deel uit van het Kunst en Bomen project. 
100 kunstenaars hebben voor 100 bomen werken gemaakt. De kunstroute in Oisterwijk en omgeving is van 25 mei t/m 26 oktober te bezoeken. Op zondag 25 mei wordt de kunstroute feestelijk geopend om 14u op De Lind in Oisterwijk. 
Na de opening zijn er nog verschillende activiteiten zoals een Meet & Greet met de kunstenaars, dus hou mijn site in de gaten voor meer rondom mijn boomkleed.
Mocht je naar de opening toe gaan, laat het me even weten, dan spreken we af bij mijn boomkleed in Moergestel!

Hier onder een fotoverslag van het maakproces, 
tot in Moergestel!

Eerste ontmoeting met mijn boom

Samen met Thijs meten

Mooi op maat gezaagd door Gert Paans

Lakken, heel veel lagen lakken & beitsen

Mijn werk is sinds 23 juni 2014 tijdelijk niet aanwezig, hopelijk wordt het snel teruggeplaatst (bericht geplaatst op 10 juli 2014)

Quid Pro Quo: Negotiating Futures

Making ricecarpets at Changing Spaces, Cambridge (UK)

From the 31th of March till the 11th of April I had the great honor to participate in the Cambridge Sustainability Residency. After a week and a halve program, meeting different organization, hearing lectures and following workshops, we made an exhibition in two days time in which we shared our thoughts on Sustainability. In the exhibition with the nice title "Quid Pro Quo: Negotiating Futures", Latin for what for what or something for something, I ended up working with a theme I've been fascinated about for a long time now: Corpus Christi.

I already wanted to make a project inspired by the Corpus Christi procession for a long time now. However at first I didn't want to do something with it in Cambridge. When I was preparing for my stay (googling and reading about nice things to see in Cambridge) I came across the Corpus Christi College. I couldn't find a direct connection with the procession at first, so I put it out of my mind.

On monday the 31th of March I walked through the historical center of Cambridge and I noticed these bronze flowers in the pavement. Maybe they were a reference to the Corpus Christi processions with temporary carpets? The artist Michael Fairfax enjoyed the reference and he was surprised that he didn't hear of it before, but it was not his reason behind this work.

The seed was planted however, and while the program of the residency continued, it became clearer and clearer for me that there was a connection between Sustainability and Corpus Christi. Not in the meaning they represent, but in how you communicate a point of view and try to convince others that it is the right on.

Photo by Marina Velez Vago

 "Sustainocene - A postulated future period of over a billion years where policy and governance structures as well as science, technology and ethics, coordinate to achieve the social virtues of ecological sustainability and environmental integrity"
- from Wikipedia on the 2th of April

We were in luck with our residency that we had a curator among the participants. Vanessa Saraceno helped me a great deal. She came up with the plan to collected materials for the exhibition by knocking on peoples doors. In this way, the neighborhood got involved, could participate by giving materials and became a part of the exhibition. For me this was a great opportunity, not only is it a great, and direct way of 'Crowd funding', I also received materials I normally wouldn't choose for my ricecarpets like spaghetti or green tea.

Quid Pro Quo
1. The mutual consideration that passes between two parties to a contractual agreement, thereby rendering the agreement valid.
2. In common usage, quid pro quo refers to the giving of one valuable thing for another.

Photos by Krisztian Hofstadter

For the information booklet I wrote this text:
"Inspired by the Corpus Christi procession, held in Cambridge from 1352 to 1535. A parade through the streets from the Corpus Christi College to the Magdalene bridge. Rituals, like Corpus Christi, can mean different things to different people. In their construction of images of the world and in their incitement to action, processions can bear messages that are contradictory, volatile, and determined by context."
I made my little carpets on different places in the gallery. I based the patterns on symbols we use for re-use, recycle & reduce on packaging. I tried to match them with the works in the space. The symbol for reduce of water with Krisztian Hofstadter work, that was about how much water is being used to produce milk, and symbols for biological and vegetarian products with the sourdough project by Pía Galvez, Valerie Furnham & Emma James. 

The response to my work was overwhelming and I got a lot of questions during the opening. The respons was even more intense when someone stepped into one of the carpets. I didn't see it happen, I was in another part of the space, but I loved hearing everyone's version of how it happened!
The temporary state of the work was to my surprise the thing that really made everyone think. Of course this is an important part of my work, but for me there are more layers to it.
The next morning I remade the carpet and we had a review of the exhibition. During the silent critique a nice connection between Sustainability and my ricecarpets was made.
You had to be careful where you stand in the space and that you were constantly aware of the vulnerability of the work. Watching if people didn't stand to close to it, placing your feet with care. It made you think about nature and the environment, that you such be more careful with these vulnerable things.

More about the Cambridge Sustainability Residency on

Online review of the exhibition on

Cambridge Sustainability Residency 2014

From 31st March for 2 weeks artists from as far away as Brazil will be converging on Cambridge to debate, discuss and imagine ways of responding to the environmental challenges facing our planet.

This is the 2nd Cambridge Sustainability Residency run by artists with support from Cambridge School of Art. The 14 selected artists encompass sculpture, moving image, photography and installation and this year include the curator Vanessa Saraceno from Italy and the award winning designer Andrea Bandoni from Brazil.

The organisers of the residency also wish to build up a network of artists interested in the field of sustainability, and in the spirit of establishing a continuity and to foster relationships they have invited some artists who participated in the first residency to exhibit work alongside the selected artists from this year’s residency.

The 2 weeks will culminate in an exhibition at the Changing Spaces Gallery on Norfolk Street from 11th to 13th April with the Private View on 10th April from 6 to 8pm.

More information on

Cambridge Sustainability Residency

"Tour des poulets" 2008

"We are delighted to let you know that you have been selected to take part in the Cambridge Sustainability Residency 2014. We were impressed with your work, ideas and reasons for wishing to take part and look forward to working with you from 31st March to 11th April in Cambridge."

You can imagine how happy I was with that in my inbox! I still can't really believe it, but on Sunday 30th of March I will be taking a train to Cambridge and the next morning my residency will start. I will try to keep you posted om my blog, and of course make a post when I get back.

"The aspiration of this residency therefore is to maintain a focus of attention on the preciousness and fragility of the planet and to break down boundaries in thinking in order to generate positive solutions that are personal, practical and political."

The residency program is full of wonderful workshops, visits and talks. We start of with a presentation about ourselves on monday 31th of March and end with an exhibition from 11 till 13 of April.

More information about the Cambridge Sustainability Residency on and