Three new works in stone at Dutch Kröller-Müller Museum’s sculpture garden

Jan van Munster (Gorinchem, 1939), „Battery for five fingers“, 1995, black granite, 170 × 172 × 170 cm.

„Battery for five fingers“ by Jan van Munster, „Rockswarm“ by Bill Woodrow and „my poetry is the world …“ by herman de vries

The Kröller-Müller Museum in the Netherlands not far from Arnhem has 3 new acquisitions of sculptural works using stone: „Battery for five fingers“ by Jan van Munster, „Rockswarm“ by Bill Woodrow and „my poetry is the world …“ by herman de vries.

„Battery for five fingers“ (see photo above) had been donated to the museum by Jan van Munster in the summer of 2018. The 9-ton granite sphere is one big ball of amassed energy. The 5 round holes invite the visitor to insert his fingers, in order to „charge yourself up“, according to the artist. Battery was given a place in the sculpture garden, where the granite sculpture van Munster’s „+-“ had already been placed since 1988. The length of the plus and the minus and the diameter of the sphere are 172 cm, van Munster’s height.

Bill Woodrow (Henley-on-Thames, 1948), „Rockswarm“, 2001, stone, bronze and gold leaf, 203 × 86 × 120 cm.„Rockswarm“ is one of the sculptures that Bill Woodrow made about bees and keeping them. The artist himself is a beekeeper. These works stem from his fascination for the tight-knit organization of a bee colony, and for its vulnerability. Rockswarm shows the formation of a swarm, a phenomenon that only occurs when a colony is about to move or has recently done so. In Rockswarm, the place of arrival or departure of the radiant, gold-leaf-covered tangle of bees, is the inhospitable environment of a bare rock.

herman de vries (Alkmaar, 1931), „my poetry is the world ...“, 1974, Belgian bluestone, gold paint, 4.2 × 60 × 60 cm.„my poetry is the world …“ was made by herman de vries in 1974 on the occasion of the first Symposion in Gorinchem, a sporadic art event organized for constructivist and concrete art. The tile was in the pavement in front of Kunstcentrum Badhuis in Gorinchem from 1974 to 1984 and subsequently in front of de vries’ gallery Art Affairs in Amsterdam from 1988 to 2008. Now the work is placed in the path to the sculpture garden at the Kröller-Müller Museum where visitors can step on it whether aware of it or not. Carved into the stone is the all-embracing motto of herman de vries: my poetry is the world.

The Kröller-Müller Museum has one Europe’s largest sculpture gardens where the visitor can enjoy both sculptures and nature. Exhibited are about 160 works of world famous artists. The museum is also known for its second-largest Van Gogh collection in the world with almost 90 paintings and over 180 drawings.

Kröller-Müller Museum

Photos: Marjon Gemmeke

(07.05.2019, USA: 05.07.2019)