Exhibition — 19 Sep 2015 until 3 Jan 2016

A selection of works from the gift of Pieter and Marieke Sanders presented in dialog with the collection of the Stedelijk

In 2013, art collectors Pieter and Marieke Sanders gifted the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam over 100 artworks by contemporary artists. Now, for the first time, a selection of work from their donation will be shown in dialog with the Stedelijk’s existing collection. 

The exhibition features work by artists including Jan Andriesse, Marinus Boezem, Alicia Framis, Ryan Gander, David Jablonowski, Job Koelewijn, Navid Nuur, Paulien Oltheten, Amalia Pica, Stephen Waddell, Marijke van Warmerdam and WassinkLundgren. 

For over forty years, the Sanders avidly collected the work of relatively young and unknown artists from the Netherlands and overseas. Their collection encompasses a diverse range of media, including painting and sculpture, and places particular emphasis on photography. The collection presentation focuses on works that transform the commonplace into the extraordinary. It also reveals how art makes the transition from a private, informal context to the public realm of the museum space.

Director Beatrix Ruf about the gift: “This gift expresses the meaningful relationship between the Sanders and the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. The Stedelijk follows artists as their careers unfold, and endeavors to collect their work in great depth. Artworks gifted by private collectors such as Pieter and Marieke Sanders present us with the chance to extend and enrich certain clusters. We are profoundly indebted to their generosity.”

Pieter and Marieke Sanders comment on their gift: “We felt that the reopening of the Stedelijk should be commemorated by a gift. This inspired us to select a number of artworks from our collection and donate them to the Museum, so that they can be seen again outside the walls of our home. Because art needs to be seen.”

Thanks to their foresighted, astute acquisitions, Pieter and Marieke Sanders have amassed a collection that spans three generations of internationally renowned artists. Their collection also offers a fascinating glimpse into Amsterdam’s dynamic gallery scene. Although international art fairs play an increasingly prominent part in the purchase of art, the Amsterdam galleries remain a vital inspiration for the Sanders. 

The gifted works signify an important contribution to the collection of the Stedelijk. For example, an early painting by Jan Andriesse (Jakarta, ID, 1950) is an excellent complement to the artist’s other works already in the Stedelijk collection. A photowork by Ryan Gander (Chester, GB, 1976) represents an auspicious addition to the Stedelijk’s burgeoning collection of his oeuvre.
The Stedelijk has been following artist Job Koelewijn (Spakenburg, NL, 1962) since the late 1990s. One of his most iconic works is Schoonmaken van het Rietveldpaviljoen (1992), in which women, wearing the traditional costume of Spakenburg, clean Rietveld’s Modernist-style glass pavilion. In 2000, the artist and gallery Fons Welters jointly gifted the cleaning cloth used in the work to the museum as a multiple. Thanks to the Sanders gift, the Stedelijk can now add the seven-part photo series of the performance to its collection.

This donation also marks the entrance of a number of artists into the collection of the Stedelijk, such as Canadian photographer Steven Waddell (Vancouver, CA, 1968). 

The exhibition is curated by Anne Ruygt, junior photography curator.


An artist’s book with photos by Johannes Schwartz will be published to celebrate the gift to the Stedelijk and to the RCE. The publication also contains an interview between the Sanders and Stedelijk curators Hripsimé Visser and Anne Ruygt, and head of collections Bart Rutten.


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