Outsider Art Museum
The Outsider Art Museum is the only museum in the Netherlands that shows
leading art works by national and international Outsider Artists.
Experience the extraordinary art made by individuals who, for the most
part, are not formally trained as artists. Their work is authentic,
unconventional and goes against the grain.
The Outsider Art Museum presents surprising, unpolished art. The public steps into a completely new world and is brought into the wild rollercoaster of Outsider Artists, who sometimes go about their work almost manically. The inner world of these artists is often so full that it overflows into a great oeuvre. In the Outsider Art Museum, visitors learn to look at art in a different way.
Willem van Genk: WOEST
19 September 2019 - 3 May 2020
Willem van Genk (1927-2005) is an artist who appeals to the imagination. He first made drawings in pen and ink and later collages in oil that he called “placards.” From the 1980s onwards, this was complemented with the creation of trolley buses made of waste material from which he built a trolley bus station, and finally with drawings in four ballpoint pen colors. His altered raincoats form a separate category. He provided them with extra buttons and printers. That gave them a mysterious effect for him. Each coat gave it masculine power for once.
His subjects are: cities, means of transport and transport systems, stations for buses and trains, journeys, political systems, structures, history, and also the exciting situations surrounding murders and executions. In some works his special fascination for hair is visible. You sometimes recognize the style of cartoons, comics and graffiti, but also his very own way of painting and sketching city panoramas and puzzling a flood of details together.
Willem van Genk was both modern and old-fashioned. He depicted both the valuable things that were broken down and stopped, and the new, hopeful developments in the field of infrastructure and the economy. He has sometimes been called a traditional realist, but described himself as “a representative of a young school” who still had to make a name for himself. In his work, he seems to be a traveler, always looking for how social systems function and how he himself could fit into them.
His enormous love for travel, books and classical music, characterize his work and his personality. He once did simple work in a social workplace, but he grew to be the most important Outsider Art artist in the Netherlands.
From mid-September 2019 to mid-March 2020 a large retrospective of Willem van Genk can be seen in the Outsider Art Museum. This exhibition is designed by the Belgium fashiodesioner Walter van Beirendonck. The exhibition then travels on to the Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg.