For the love of things previously loved II
The moment has come, Constant’s house has been sold and we are moving out September 14.One more time we pick up all his belongings and decide on their fate. Nothing makes you realise that there used to be a time when objects were produced to last a lifetime then cleaning out the house of someone born in 1920 does. Most objects will find their way to our archive, storage or the auction house but there is a selection of objects that do not fit in either of these categories but which could still flourish once again in a new loving home. From artist materials, crockery to typewriters and an old record player.
Whether you foster a love for all things previously loved or you are just looking for some quality tools we would like to invite you once more on Friday September 17 to come browse between 17-19h. It’s on donation basis, all proceeds will go to the Constant 101 project.
Please let us know if you plan to come by registering here: FOR THE LOVE
NB: Limited slots available!
There are some larger items that we would like to bring to your attention:
- Drawing cabinet: 60,5 x 104 x 80 cm | inside drawers: 3,5 x 93 x 69,5 cm. See picture
- Easel: 202 x 88 x 85 cm
- Painting cardboard (exact measurements: quite large)
NEW BABYLON A lecture by Constant ICA London 1963
A short performance re-enactment of Constant’s lecture at the London Institute of Contemporary Art in 1963.
New Babylon is a city plan designed to fulfill the desires of the free person, proposing new, creatively passionate architecture. Dutch artist Constant spent 20 years developing and devising New Babylon — he prepared models, blueprints, collages, sound clips, paintings, and drawings presented in a series of international lectures and exhibitions.
The lecture, which will be re-enacted at the Liebling Haus, offers a conceptual and physical description of New Babylon and explores the artist’s role as a generator of new and exciting ideas and the possibility of experiencing everyday life in the city as art.
Meshi Olinky and Eran Eizenhamer.
Producer: Olga Stadnyuk
Supported by the Ministry of Culture and Sports
NB: 19h Tel Aviv time (+1h)
New Babylon: Continuous Now with Mark Wigley
Kunstinstituut Melly and Het Nieuwe Instituut are proud to co-present an evening talks program and parkour surrounding the legacy and 101-year anniversary of Constant Nieuwenhuys. The program centers upon Nieuwenhuys’ visionary utopic architectural project ‘New Babylon’, as well as the landmark exhibition held in 1997/8 and curated by architecture historian Mark Wigley. Created in 1956, New Babylon offered a vision of a future built environment spanning the entire surface of the Earth, held aloft on pillars; of a society organized around leisure and play, work only being performed by automated machines. How does this vision look today? How does the proposition of New Babylon change from 1997 to 2021? And what was the impact of this exhibition upon those who saw it?
The evening will start with a gathering at Kunstinstituut Melly – surrounding a presentation of materials from the exhibition archive, and in collaboration with the Master Interior Architecture: Research + Design, MIARD, together with special guest Mark Wigley. The program will then enjoy a walk to the Het Nieuwe Instituut for a lecture by Wigley reflecting on the exhibition, together with responses by professionals, attendees, and students.
Do you have a memory of seeing the 1997 exhibition ‘New Babylon’? We are welcoming contributions from the public. Please contact us at office [at] kunstinstituutmelly.nl.
Bicycle Tour to De Poort van Constant III
The Gate of Constant is a striking work of art, monument and plastic sign in one that stands at the entrance of the Ookmeer sports park on Troelstralaan near Herman Bonpad in the Geuzenveld district in Amsterdam Nieuw-West. It seems to be a cross between a building and visual art. Due to the added benches, it is also used, for example, to sit on. The artwork appeared in 1963 at the entrance as a ‘gateway’ to the western part of the sports park and was designed by and named after Constant Nieuwenhuys.
The artwork consists of thirteen meters high concrete bent pillars of different lengths and at different angles. That’s impressive above ground. However, most of the artwork is underground and cannot be seen. It has a pile foundation of 28 piles, each thirteen meters long, on which a 20 cm thick set floor has been placed. All in all, an interesting work to explore further.
On the way to the Poort van Constant, the cycling tour takes you past several other gateways to the Western Garden Cities, such as the Conny Rietschoten Bridge, and architectural highlights in New West, such as the Oeverzicht catering building (the former East Bank) designed by Dick Slebos and the Hogguerflats van Piet Zanstra. We also pass various wall artworks along the way, such as Phoenix by artist Raymond Both on one of the Hogguerflats.
Distance: about 5 km
Duration: approximately 1.5 hours
Tip: have a drink at Hotel Buiten, Th.J. Lammerslaan 3, 1064 DH Amsterdam
Date: Saturday 09 October 2021
Departure time: 1.30 pm / 13:30h
Start location: Noordzijde 31, 1064 GV Amsterdam
Costs: € 12.50 (full rate) | €8.50 (discount rate) | free (children up to 12 years)
Discounted rate: CJP, student card, Museum card, Stadspas Amsterdam, Van Eesteren Paviljoen day ticket and Van Eesteren Paviljoen annual ticket.
Bicycle: you need your own bicycle for the bicycle tour.
Please note: the bike tour will in principle take place in all weather conditions. Make sure you are sufficiently prepared for the weather conditions of that day.
Accessibility: the bike tour is located in the public space in Amsterdam Nieuw-West and is accessible to anyone who can cycle. Read more about the accessibility of the outdoor museum on the Accessibility page.
Furniture Auction | Constant's Home
The house in which Constant lived from 1978 till 2005 has been sold. The househol effects from his music room, library, and home studio will be auctioned from 19 October till November 2nd 2021 at Auctionhouse De Zwaan.
Viewing days are: 25 till 31 October.
The proceeds from this auction will be used to support the Constant 101 project.
The Future can be Humane
Constant (Constant Nieuwenhuijs, 1920–2005) was not only an artist but also one of the intellectual driving forces behind the Cobra movement (1948–1951). As such, he can be seen as one of the leading co-founders. He became an artist who always dared to explore new paths, did not shy away from challenging collaborations and was above all convinced of the important role that creativity and art play in our society.
Artist Antonis Pittas has selected the works of Constant to be shown in this exhibition. With this selection he wants to emphasise the image of Constant as an artist with a undaunted belief in a better world, in which collectivity, peace and creativity would prevail. The selection of around 40 paintings and works on paper ranges from the childlike works from the Cobra era – in which the bird regularly returns as a symbol of freedom – to works in which Constant refers to change and even revolution. In addition to his long-term project New Babylon, in which he visualised the society of the future, a number of works from the period after New Babylon are also shown. This is the first time that the Cobra Museum focuses on this later period in Constant’s oeuvre. The culmination of the late works is the oil painting Les expulsés that Constant painted in 1999 in reaction to the Kosovo War.
New work by contemporary artists
The museum has invited Antonio Jose Guzman and Antonis Pittas (both live and work in Amsterdam) to respond to Constant’s oeuvre and ideas. These internationally renowned artists have made new work especially for the occasion.
Ode to Constant – And Free Thinking
Most people know Constant as co-founder of Cobra and his visionary New Babylon. There were no limits to his artistic exploration and expression. From the beginning he also painted and kept looking at the world – eyes and mind wide open – as a painter. This presentation shows why the artists and founders of Museum Henriette Polak recognized and appreciated his art. His work was collected at an early stage and also later on. Their vision on art was — based on visible reality – above all open minded and without preconceptions. Also they share, in a very personal way, a humanistic view of life. Constant was one of them.