October 7, 2004 - Centraal Museum - ‘Rietveld’s Universe’
October 7, 2004

‘Rietveld’s Universe’

Rietveld’s Universe
From 2 October 2004

Centraal Museum Utrecht
Nicolaaskerkhof 10, Utrecht, bus 2
T: (+31 30) 236 2362, F: (+31 30) 233 2006
pers [​at​] centraalmuseum.nl
open: tue-sun 11.00-17.00


The exhibition, ‘Rietveld’s Universe’ has been opened in the Centraal Museum on Saturday October 2, 2004. The exhibition features pieces from the Museum’s collection of work by Utrecht furniture designer Gerrit Rietveld and his kindred spirits in the visual arts. ‘Rietveld’s Universe’ is a semi-permanent exhibition situated on the second floor of the 1920 wing of the Centraal Museum.
Rietveld’s Cartesian knot
The exhibition sets Rietveld’s furniture alongside works from the modern art collection. Its thematic approach clearly reveals the three-dimensional nature and the architectonic aspects of Rietveld’s furniture design. In each gallery a particular aspect of that work is illuminated. Thus one gallery is devoted to the ‘Cartesian knot’ which can be seen in the recently acquired unpainted slatted chair dating from 1918. Another room showcases Rietveld’s wire and tubular chairs while another gallery is devoted exclusively to the different variations of the famous Zigzag chair. The furniture is displayed alongside paintings by Rietveld’s like-minded peers. These include work by artists such as Cesar Domela, Theo van Doesburg, Bart van der Leck and Charley Toorop. In addition works by a later generation of kindred spirits are displayed including pieces by Peter Struycken, Ad Dekkers and Joost Baljeu.
Home again
Gerrit Th. Rietveld (1888-1964) lived and worked in Utrecht. He learned the art of carpentry and cabinet making in his father’s workshop. Having become involved with De Stijl movement in 1918, he met avant-garde artists such as Theo van Doesburg and architects such as Van ‘t Hoff. Henceforth his career as cabinetmaker and architect took an avant-garde turn. The Centraal Museum owns the largest Rietveld collection in the world. Alongside the famous Rietveld-Schroder house and the Rietveld houses on the Erasmuslaan in Utrecht, the Centraal Museum also holds many original pieces of furniture, designs, models, and an extensive archive of correspondence. The 1918 unpainted slatted chair is a recent acquisition. In Spring 2003 much of the Rietveld collection traveled to Denmark, Japan and the Czech republic. As a result only a limited selection of Rietveld’s work has been available for display over the past year. The ‘Rietveld’s Universum’ exhibition marks the collection’s return to its full glory.
Centraal Museum
T: (+31 30) 236 2362, F: (+31 30) 233 2006, www.centraalmuseum.nl
Nicolaaskerkhof 10, Utrecht, bus 2 open: tue-sun 11.00-17.00 closed: 30 Apr, 25 Dec & 1 Jan

Centraal Museum
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