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Help young worlds

ad de jong
Dance performance on the opening night by Tress. Four sculptures are presented in the show.

The largest is produced especially for 1857: a six-meter long cylindrical model, composed of large intersecting cones and numerous colourful freckles. While one is crammed into the front space, a group of three hangs in the hall. They are highly elaborate formations of De Jong’s self-defined doctrine and craft. In the grey gleam of the skylights. All hovering in torso height.
Plastic Ab-Ex for the space age – only wait, when was the space age again?

Down south on the mainland, in a dockside warehouse, strips of fibreglass are carefully laid out on cardboard covered with plastic. Epoxy is poured and sheets bent into shape. Wisps of bitter fumes rise and curl. The prepolymer resin reacts with polyamine monomers. The cardboard is duct-taped to form rudimentary moulds. Warm brows are cooled. Before the composite is properly cured any excess must be removed using knives and scissors, unavoidably leaving gazillions of razor sharp spikes of glass that cause delicate cuts in the fingers of able seamen as they meticulously haul the cargo aboard.

Ad de Jong (born 1953, Breda, The Netherlands) has made performances, paintings, prints and sculptures for four decades. He was one of the co-founders of W139, an artist-run space that saw the light of day in squatted a theatre building in Amsterdam’s Red Light District. He lives and works in Amsterdam.