Willem de Rooij

Willem de Rooij

Detail from Willem de Rooij: Index. Riots, Protest, Mourning and Commemoration (as represented in newspapers, January 2000–July 2002), 2003. Courtesy Galerie Buchholz Cologne/Berlin.

April 10, 2015

Willem de Rooij
18 April–28 June 2015

Preview: Friday 17 April, 17:30h

40th anniversary benefit auction: Wednesday 20 May, 17:30h, Café Opera, Stockholm

The Swedish Contemporary Art Foundation
Kungsbro Strand 19
112 26 Stockholm

T +46 8 502 198 38


Willem de Rooij
This spring Index presents an exhibition by Dutch artist Willem de Rooij, his first solo presentation in Sweden. De Rooij’s work is multifaceted and includes in many instances the work of other artists or artefacts from historical and anthropological collections. This contextual gesture or act of framing draws attention to the relationship between cultural identity and memory, collecting and display. In de Rooij’s works, meaning is not produced by an object or image alone, but in the relationship between the things we see, their context and our own act of reading.

For his exhibition at Index, de Rooij further investigates the relationship between images and meaning through an installation that consists of two different works. His installation Index: Riots, Protest, Mourning and Commemoration (as represented in newspapers, January 2000- July 2002) consists of 18 large panels with a selection of photographs cut from newspapers. The installation is an impressive collection of global political struggles, which also invites a closer look into the mechanics of representation: how do people present themselves? And who is making a picture of them, and for whom? The work is reminiscent of the history of image collections, such as the Mnemosyne Atlas by German art historian Aby Warburg, started in 1927. But in difference to Warburg, Index avoids to suggest historical archetypes and rather questions the classification of images that the work’s title implies.

The second work is a new interpretation of one of a series of bouquets by the artist. Bouquet V, 2010, consists of 95 different flowers loosely arranged in a spherical shape. Each of the flowers occurs only once in the bouquet, avoiding a hierarchy of colour, species or type. The bouquet poetically symbolises a concept of diversity and the tension between the individual and the collective.

The exhibition is a collaboration with Arnolfini, Bristol, with kind support by the Mondriaan Fund and Peroni.

Film Screening: Mandarin Ducks (Jeroen de Rijke / Willem de Rooij, 2005)
Wednesday 29 April, 19h and Saturday 16 May, 15h
Location: Bio Mauritz, Filmhuset, Borgvägen 1–5, Stockholm
Organized with Film i Samtidskonsten

Archaeologies and Geologies of Media, with Jussi Parikka and Lori Emerson
Saturday 30 May, 16h
Organized with OEI and Linköping University

A book will be published in collaboration with Arnolfini, Bristol, MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt am Main, and Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, with texts by Sven Lütticken and Pablo Martínez.

Social media: @indexstockholm #WillemdeRooij

Index in spring 2015
In 2015, Index celebrates its 40th anniversary! Building on 40 successful years as one of the earliest organisations for contemporary art in Scandinavia, Index is looking to the future and is re-opening in expanded spaces, with a new graphic identity and a strong strand of educational and participatory activities, complementing the international programme of exhibitions and events. To celebrate its anniversary, and as a new initiative to support a sustainable future for the organization, Index is organising a benefit auction on 20 May at Café Opera in Stockholm, with a preview exhibition at the gallery Belenius/Nordenhake (18–20 May). Ei Arakawa and Karl Holmqvist will host the auction.

Index’s spaces, located at Kungsbro Strand 19 on Kungsholmen, have been re-designed by the Berlin-based office Kooperative für Darstellungspolitik. Coinciding with the spatial redesign, Index’s graphic identity and website has been newly developed by the graphic design studio HIT (Lina Grumm and Annette Lux). 

Pedagogical programme
Index’s pedagogical programme offers workshops and educational activities that explore themes and works from our current exhibitions. Since 2015 we are working with “Schools in residence”—a programme that invites high school and gymnasium classes to return several times throughout the year for a continued dialogue, including practical workshops and artist studio visits. Outcomes from workshops are exhibited in our pedagogy space.

Willem de Rooij at Index
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April 10, 2015

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