Painting from Paramaribo to Amsterdam
Exhibition — 12 Dec 2020 until 11 Jul 2021
The exhibition Surinamese School is a celebration of Surinamese painting in all its diversity and depth. Presenting over 100 artworks by 35 artists, Surinamese School explores the key themes and narratives at the heart of Surinamese painting from 1910 to the mid-1980s. Depictions of Surinamese history, spirituality and everyday life, alongside forays into abstraction, and social change, gave shape to artistic developments.
*During the Bruce Nauman exhibition (running until 24 October 2021), there’s an additional one-off surcharge of €3.
The exhibition pays particular attention to Surinamese pioneers who blazed a trail for other artists by spearheading the development of art education and professional practice and, with this, the development of painting. A team of guest curators identified the artist-innovators who put Surinamese art on the map. Some artists combined their artistic practice with social and political activism, in pursuit of a (culturally) independent Suriname. Surinamese School also features a significant number of work by artists who lived and worked in Amsterdam for many years such as Armand Baag and Quintus Jan Telting.
The Stedelijk’s historic collection contains few artworks by Surinamese artists. But thanks to many lenders from Suriname and the Netherlands, this exhibition was able to go ahead. Their support enables us to examine Surinamese painting from a variety of perspectives, and further consolidate their place in collective memory.
The 'Surinamese School' seeks to explore the coherence and dynamics between different generations of Surinamese artists. Taking a chronologically thematic approach, the exhibition shows that while there is no clear of definition of ‘Surinamese’ painting, similar genres and subjects reappear. The exuberance and vitality of the works in the exhibition invite further research and more presentations in the future.
In the year in which Suriname celebrates 45 years of independence, the exhibition also recalls the country’s shared history with the Netherlands. One of the legacies of prolonged Dutch colonial rule, for example, led to a dearth of professional art education and, for many years, Surinamese artists were compelled to leave their own country to pursue their art training in the Netherlands. After graduating, many artists returned to Suriname permanently or temporarily. Jules Chin A Foeng completed his education in the Netherlands and, upon returning to Suriname, championed Surinamism in his work and in art education. In addition to art training in their own country, which evolved against a backdrop of mounting nationalism, processes of decolonisation and nation-building, the artistic dialogue between Suriname and the Netherlands impacted the work and life of various artists in the exhibition.
Artists in the exhibition: Armand Baag; Wim Bos Verschuur; Robert Bosari; Jules Chin A Foeng; Frank Creton; Augusta and Anna Curiel; Felix de Rooy; Robbert Doelwijt; Wilgo Elshot; Ron Flu; Rudi Getrouw; Leo Glans; Eddy Goedhart; Nola Hatterman; Soeki Irodikromo; Rihana Jamaludin; Jean Georges Pandellis; Rinaldo Klas; Noni Lichtveld; Hans Lie; Guillaume Lo-A-Njoe; Nic Loning; Rudy Maynard; Jacques Anton Philipszoon; George Ramjiawansingh; Stuart Robles de Medina; George Gerhardus Theodorus Rustwijk; Cliff San A Jong; Gerrit Schouten; Govert Jan Telting; Quintus Jan Telting; René Tosari; Erwin de Vries; Paul Woei; Leo Wong Loi Sing.
The exhibition is curated by guest curators Jessica de Abreu (anthropologist and co-founder of The Black Archives), Mitchell Esajas (anthropologist and co-founder of New Urban Collective and The Black Archives), Bart Krieger (publicist, independent art historical researcher and founder of BAM! De Kunst Toko) and Ellen de Vries (publicist and independent researcher) in collaboration with Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam staff members Inez Blanca van der Scheer (project leader STUDIO i), Claire van Els (curator) and Carlien Lammers (diversity officer). Ellen de Vries is the initiator of the project proposal. The exhibition concept was developed by the working group of (guest) curators. Chandra van Binnendijk (independent publicist and editor in Suriname) is involved as content editor and as consultant advising on the exhibition concept.
The exhibition design is developed by Serana Angelista.
In this online tour, the curators of the exhibition will show you some of the highlights.
With guest curators Jessica de Abreu (anthropologist and co-founder The Black Archives), Mitchell Esajas (anthropologist and co-founder New Urban Collective and The Black Archives), Bart Krieger (publicist, independent art historical researcher and founder of BAM! De Kunst Toko) and Ellen de Vries ( publicist and independent researcher), Inez Blanca van der Scheer (Stedelijk Museum / project leader STUDIO i), Claire van Els (curator Stedelijk Museum) and Carlien Lammers (employee inclusion Stedelijk Museum).
Surinamese School: The Talkshow gets into a conversation with artists and art historians about Surinamese painting, presents excerpts from the new theater productions De Gliphoeve and Het waarom beantwoord, and of course the exhibition Surinamese School, currently on view at the Stedelijk Museum.
Discover this dynamic program with spoken word, music, performance and discussion.
This program has been developed in collaboration with The Black Archives
Click [cc] for English captions
Online reader about the exhibition
To bolster the research that was part of the preparations of the exhibition Surinamese School. Painting from Paramaribo to Amsterdam the museum has compiled an online reader with contributions from the guest curators, elaborating on a number of important themes in the exhibition. Jessica de Abreu, for example, writes about the photography of the Curiel sisters, Mitchell Esajas about Wim Bos Verschuur, Nola Hatterman and Armand Baag, and Ellen de Vries, in collaboration with Eline de Jong, about the work Louis Richard Drenthe Op het terras van Nola Hatterman. In their introduction, Bart Krieger and Claire van Els discuss the development of the exhibition concept, while Carlien Lammers and Inez Blanca van der Scheer provide an analysis of the process of creating the exhibition, in a working process that was new to the Stedelijk. Chandra van Binnendijk, independent publicist and editor in Suriname, was involved as editor of the exhibition texts.
The online reader also includes all the exhibition texts and a (selected) bibliography. A limited printed edition is distributed to libraries and archives and copies are available for consultation in the exhibition. If you work at a heritage institution and you believe that a printed copy would be an addition to your collection, please contact us at email@example.com.
Stedelijk x Patta
Together with street fashion label Patta, we celebrate Surinamese art with this limited edition of 100 t-shirts featuring René Tosari's vibrant work Untitled (400 years of Resistance and Fight Suriname) from 1981. Only available at the Stedelijk Museumshop! As soon as the museum opens agian, we will let you know when the sale starts!
The exhibition was realised thanks to the generous support of the Straver Fund and Van der Vossen-Delbrück via the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.