Marcel van Eeden (1965, The Hague) bases his drawings on events from fragments of books, newspapers, magazines, and archives from before 1965, the year of his birth. The stories of his drawings are set in the period prior to his birth, before he was even born. The subjects vary from sober fifties interiors and cartoons to abstract patterns and typography. Despite his realistic handwriting, there is always an element of fiction present in his drawings. Individual historical facts and images from various sources come together in his work and create a fictional storyline. By combining text fragments with images, Van Eeden creates suggestive, obscure, and absurdist stories.
His recent work tells the story of a robbery of the masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The story is an extension of Van Eeden’s project The Rijnbar. A sinister figure is looking for the ultimate source of energy, a life force to gain great power with. Van Eeden is inspired by the work Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung (1819) by the German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860). Initially, the figure wants to extract this power, or “Wille”, from living organisms, but when it turns out that the cacti of the Hortus Botanicus in Amsterdam are not sufficient, he turns to the masterpieces of the Rijksmuseum. The extract from the paintings of Rembrandt and Van Ruisdael would create the ultimate source of the energy that he is looking for. The drawings that are shown in the exhibition tell an absurd story about a thrilling art theft in Amsterdam.
The exhibition Ryks Museum by Marcel van Eeden opens during the Amsterdam Art Weekend on November 22 and runs until January 5, 2020 in Galerie Martin van Zomeren. On December 6, 2019, Van Eeden presents his latest book and project The Rijnbar at Circl.ART, located in the head office of ABN Amro, Gustav Mahlerlaan 10 in Amsterdam.
Marcel van Eeden studied at the Royal Academy of Visual Arts in The Hague (1989-1993). He lives and works in Zürich, Karlsruhe and The Hague. His work has been shown in Albertina, Vienna, Drawing Room, London, GEM, The Hague, Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, Stedelijk Museum, Schiedam, Studio Sales di Norberto Ruggeri, Rome, among others. His work is included in several collections: Center Pompidou, Paris, Kunsthalle St. Gallen, Gallen, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen, MoMA, New York, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Akzo Nobel Art Foundation and De Nederlandsche Bank, Amsterdam. Van Eeden is represented by Barbara Seiler (Zürich), Clint Roenisch (Toronto), Galeri Bo Bjerggaard (Copenhagen), Galerie Maurits van de Laar (The Hague), Georg Kargl (Vienna), In Situ / Fabienne Leclerc (Paris), Sprüth Magers (Berlin / London) and
Martin van Zomeren (Amsterdam).