Ger van Elk (1941– 2014, Amsterdam, NL) is considered to be one of the pioneers of conceptual art. Averse to conventions, Van Elk experimented with many different media and frequently collaborated with fellow artists. In 1969 he participated in the groundbreaking exhibitions When Attitudes Become Form at Kunsthalle Bern and Op Losse Schroeven: Situaties en Cryptostructuren at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam; the latter still counts as the introduction of conceptual art in The Netherlands.
BORZO and GRIMM are pleased to announce the solo show As is, as was/As was, as is of Ger van Elk in both gallery spaces. Van Elk will present at BORZO the retrospective As was, as is with a selection of work made during his career. At GRIMM his most recent work and new photographic installations will be presented in the exhibition As is, as was.
Ger van Elk (1941) is a member of the heroic avant-garde generation, which formed the art of the late 1960s and ‘70s. For more than forty years Van Elk has been working on his multifaceted oeuvre containing installations, actions, photography, painting, sculpture and new media. The theoretical foundation underlining his career is the rejection of traditional views on the art object and the production of art in general. Like many of his contemporaries, he was preoccupied with issues such as authorship and the original, questions that proved to be highly significant in the development of conceptual art. Van Elk was amongst equally minded artists such as John Baldessari, Gilbert & George, Vito Acconci, and Joseph Kosuth who, disenchanted with art as a decorative commodity, developed alternative ways of working. In their attempts to redefine the art object and to deal with long-standing approaches to art, they each came independently to similar conclusions, in particular the use of language and mechanical reproduction techniques.
GRIMM Press Release
by Bianca Stigter
Interview by Roos van der Lint