In summer 2016 Huize Frankendael and artist Edward Clydesdale Thomson started the two-year collaborative project wild care, tame neglect. For two years Thomson will embed his artistic practice in the last remaining 17th-century country house in Amsterdam researching the paradoxes of nature that abound in this cultural heritage. Within the context of the Frankendael, Thomson will cultivate his daily working environment starting with a temporary studio in the garden from where he will realise artistic interventions, new artworks addressing the surroundings, a public program of workshops and lectures, an exhibition and a performance. Within this fluid programme there is the possibility for everything to bloom and decay with the seasons. Every aspect of Thomson’s activities can be followed closely within the public sphere of this historical venue that has been both lake, mansion and city nursery.
The core of wild care, tame neglect is the long-term relationship that Frankendael and Thomson cultivate. Rarely will or can a cultural institution and artist develop an intensive, two-year cooperation. This cooperation is an experimental model for artistic production. What are the mutual expectations and possibilities? What are the practical and substantive requirements, goals and aspirations in which an artwork can come about? How is a work of art shaped by the conditions of its production? The cross-pollination between Frankendael and Thomson could be so different at the heights of summer or the depths of winter. With wild care, tame neglect, Frankendael offers an artist the unique opportunity to use this historic location both as a laboratory and exhibition space and Thomson offers the institution the possibility to explore the identity of its surroundings. Historical and contemporary notions of nature and culture, work and leisure collide in Frankendael. The house was built as a country house for the 17th-century bourgeoisie, a sign of entrepreneurship, wealth and privileges and all that entails. On the other hand Frankendael is now used as a restaurant, venue for ceremonies, meetings, recreation and contemporary art.
As an artist my practice is often concerned with the places and objects on the margins of outside and inside, of wild and tamed landscapes. Be that a patterned fabric, a window blind, a gate, or a washing line: objects that form a transition from the realm of domestic and personal, to the symbolic and collective.
In October 2015, at the invitation of the board of the Frankendael Foundation, I began thinking about how my artistic practice could be of relevance within the context of Huize Frankendael. The evolving artwork, wild care, tame neglect, is the manifestation of this thinking as it develops. On this website you can find an archive of that process.
The best way of experiencing the project though is to come and see. If you would like a personal tour I’d be more than happy to show you round and you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment.
Edward Clydesdale Thomson (b. 1982) is a Scottish/Danish artist based in the Netherlands. He is a graduate of the MFA program at the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam and the BArch program at the Glasgow school of Art. He was resident at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam (2011–12). In 2011 he was awarded the Lecturis Award and nominated for the Prix de Rome. Notable recent shows include "causa finalis" (2012), Galerie Fons Welters, Amsterdam, "Prix de Rome 2011", SMART Project Space, Amsterdam, and "Secret Gardens" (2012), TENT, Rotterdam. www.edwardthomson.net
Huize Frankendael is the last remaining country estate within the city Amsterdam. Build in the 18th century, the house was used by people of to enjoy friendship and nature. While the city has enclosed the country estate, the joy of pleasure still remains. House, kitchen and garden are open throughout the year for the combination of nature, gastronomy and art&culture.
Frankendael Foundation welcomes the public to the 18th-century manorial estate Huize Frankendael in Amsterdam. We disclose the house as an exhibition space for contemporary art. Inspired by the Salon-d’art, the Foundation makes art resonate throughout society by means of exhibitions, lively debates, networking and recreation both inside and outside of the estate. Frankendael Foundation merges public and private domains during various events, where artists, visitors, collectors and critics meet.
Each year several exhibitions are held in the house.
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wild care, tame neglect
1097 BS Amsterdam