Events — 26 Jan 2018

Stefan Tcherepnin: The Mad Masters opens to the public with a Friday Night celebration at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.
Free, with RSVP 
Entrance hall Stedelijk Museum
26 Jan 2018, 6 pm until 8 pm
Main language

The first institutional solo exhibition of American artist and musician Stefan Tcherepnin is an immersive narrative environment freezing in time moments as experienced by four large monsters. More approachable than they are scary, the furry stuffed creatures are captured in diorama environments, as if on display in an alien natural history museum.

Their movement is oriented around a dramatic centerpiece: a glass clown face inspired by George C. Tilyou’s iconic Coney Island Steeplechase Park gate, strung from the ceiling as if a floating holographic amulet.

Still from Mad Masters, 2017. Image courtesy of Stefan Tcherepnin.
Still from Mad Masters, 2017. Image courtesy of Stefan Tcherepnin.

Envisioned as a clairvoyant kaleidoscopic lens, the glass piece contains fragments from potential pasts and futures: hidden in the glass are the eroded borders of US territories in a hypothetical map of a post-climate change United States, superimposed with details of Kazimir Malevich’s Suprematism: Self-Portrait in Two Dimensions (1915), part of the Stedelijk’s collection. A video projected onto the gallery wall depicts the journeys of the monsters through the four seasons, culminating in the frozen scenes at the Stedelijk Museum.  


6 pm start of opening
6.15 word of welcome
8 pm end of opening


Tcherepnin’s approach to creating visual art is informed by his background in music composition and performance. His practice is inherently collaborative, drawing on the artist’s network of artist and musician friends, their collaborative performances oftentimes taking place within Tcherepnin’s installations. Stefan Tcherepnin: The Mad Masters treats individual works as symbiotic elements that unfold temporally in relation to a core idea: like a musical composition, the exhibition functions as a total experience that goes beyond language. 

Stefan Tcherepnin: The Mad Masters is curated by Karen Archey, Curator of Contemporary Art, Time-based Media, and builds on a longstanding collaboration between the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and the artist.