Monika Szewczyk appointed director

Monika Szewczyk appointed director

De Appel

Monika Szewczyk, 2019. Photo: Jennifer Tee.


March 23, 2019
Monika Szewczyk appointed director
De Appel
Tolstraat 160
1074 VM Amsterdam
Hours: Wednesday–Saturday 2–8pm

T +31 20 625 5651
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The board of De Appel in Amsterdam is delighted to announce that Monika Szewczyk will be director of the art center starting on May 1, 2019. Szewczyk succeeds Niels Van Tomme who left De Appel at the end of 2018 to become director of Argos in Brussels.

A native of Szczecin, Poland who grew up and gained early curatorial experinece in Vancouver, Canada, Szewczyk brings with her broad international experience, most recently as a curator for documenta 14: Learning from Athens. Prior to her move to the Greek capital in 2014 to realize this uniquely bi-located edition of documenta, she developed the inaugural exhibitions program of the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago. Szewczyk also spent four formative years in Rotterdam, as head of publications at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art and core tutor at Piet Zwart Institute for postgraduate studies and research. “These years kindled a great love for many people and initiatives then forging creative lives in The Netherlands, and for De Appel in particular as it was a key institutional partner, the creative home of dear colleagues and an outlet for my emerging voice as a writer and speaker.”

With Szewczyk De Appel found a director who expresses a deeply felt love for art. She embraces different traditions and looks to new dimensions of practice. “It’s a time of institutional renewal at De Appel and I am excited to work with the team and board to make the most of this opportunity.  We can draw on the wisdom of artists, poets, critics, constructivists, politicians, beauticians, economists, entrepreneurs, historians, futurists and De Appel’s worldly support base. So my guiding question is: How can we redefine our collective desires through art and together shape our shared space—our home, our neighbourhood, our Amsterdam, our very idea of development?” Szewczyk has proven herself in the past as a sparkling thinker and hands-on doer who quickly took root in a variety of contexts and has, as a result, a particularly rich network.

The board and team of De Appel are greatly looking forward to working with her in the coming years.

De Appel was founded in 1975 by Wies Smals, making it one of the longest existing non-profit art institutions in the Netherlands. Under Smals’ visionary leadership, De Appel grew into a renowned center for performance, installation and video art—art forms that were still in their infancy then. She also took care to establish an archive which continues to grow to this day. Under the directorship of Saskia Bos (between 1984 to 2006) De Appel became a center of international allure. The program focused on promoting young artistic talent and began cultivating curatorial voices with the foundation in 1994 of the now renowned De Appel Curatorial Program. It’s upcoming 25-year jubilee will be celebrated in 2019 with Szewczyk. Director Ann Demeester created a dynamic artistic program between 2006 and 2014 marked by robust discursive activities via conferences and publishing, and a new sense of civic engagement. From 2014 to 2015, Lorenzo Benedetti took over the directorship and focused on strong solo presentations that imaginatively engaged the entirety of De Appel’s premises. Between 2016 and 2018, Niels Van Tomme was director of De Appel when the organisation moved to the area of Amsterdam New West where he established a program characterised by long-term engagements with socially conscious artists. Szewczyk’s program will be developed throughout 2019 and begin in 2020.

For current and upcoming programming at De Appel, please continue to visit our website  

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De Appel
March 23, 2019

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