Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now

Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now

Van Abbemuseum

Huseyin Bahri Alptekin, Self-Heterotopia, Catching Up with Self, 2009. Photo: Peter Cox.

October 23, 2013

Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now
Opening: Saturday 2 November 2013, 2:30–7pm

Van Abbemuseum
Bilderdijklaan 10
Eindhoven – The Netherlands

T +31 (0) 40 238 1000
info [​at​] vanabbemuseum.nl


On 2 November, the Van Abbemuseum opens a completely new narrative presentation of its collection. The exhibitions are based on the knowledge built up over the last years of experimental collection displays at the museum. Titled Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now, artworks, archives, histories and relations are brought together in historical constellations that connect individual artworks to the social and political contexts in which they were made and exhibited. The selection starts with a Picasso from 1909 and ends in works from 2013, spread over five floors. Never before has the museum exhibited such a comprehensive selection to tell stories of aesthetics, ethics and politics over the last 100 years. Besides giving attention to art from the last century, a significant part of the exhibition is devoted to art after 1989 and to new acquisitions not previously shown. The design of the visitors’ experience has also led to a number of surprising interventions in the architecture of the 2003 extension.

Importance for the present moment
Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now is constructed from the point of view of the early twenty-first century, in which globalisation, networking and new forms of initiative and protest have emerged. In selecting the artworks, the museum considered specific public moments. That may be circumstances in which the artwork was made, but also the exhibitions in which it was first exhibited. These are the moments in time when people talk about an artwork and give meaning to it. The stories we tell are how artworks become part of a wider culture and they determine their economic and social value. By not only showing the artworks but also the history of their display and interpretation we may be able to define better their importance for our present era, as well as understand how they came into being.

Christiane Berndes, Charles Esche, Diana Franssen

Exhibition design
Studio Oren Sagiv

For more information on Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now  you can visit www.vanabbemuseum.nl 
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The exhibition Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now is made possible with the support of BankGiro Loterij, Mondriaan Fund, Stichting Promotors Van Abbemuseum and VSB Fonds.


Once Upon a Time… The Collection Now at Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven
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October 23, 2013

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