Marinus Boezem belongs, together with Jan Dibbets and Ger van Elk, among the most important representatives of the Conceptual Art and Arte Povera movement in the Netherlands and was among the first artists that worked with video and television art. Boezem was one of the initiators of the ground-breaking exhibition ‘Op Losse Schroeven: Situaties en Cryptostructuren’ (1969) at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and took part in the equally influential exhibition ‘When Attitudes Become Form’ at the Kunsthalle Bern in the same year. Works from both exhibitions are included in the presentation at Art Basel. These historical exhibitions are still highly relevant: in 2011 the Stedelijk Museum organized a retrospective of ‘Op Losse Schroeven’ resulting in the acquisition of the group of works from that exhibition; key works both from the exhibition and within Boezem’s oeuvre. In 2013 a highly acclaimed remake of ‘When Attitudes Become Form’ took place at the Prada Foundation during the Venice Biennale.Shows (1964-’69)
Between 1964 and 1969, like a businessman dealing in art ideas, Marinus Boezem travelled to museums and galleries wearing a three-piece suit and carrying a briefcase with proposals for ‘Shows’. He deliberately used an international term for the goods with which he travelled. The ‘Shows’ form a coherent series of drawings, stencilled in editions of 50 to 100, sent to key figures in the artworld, intended as proposals for installations that could be realized in a museum on order. Boezem offered ‘ideas’, not finished sculptures or paintings but proposals presented in a catalogue that were meant to be realised only if there proved to be a demand. The individual works display Boezem's revolutionary invention of new visual materials such as air, weather, wind, and the use of measurements as artistic material. The proposals, drawn with a felt-tip pen as simple, unpretentious thoughts for exhibitions based on concepts, are far ahead of their time.Key works from ’60-‘70s
The presentation is completed with a selection of works from the 1960s and 70s including examples of Boezems' early video art works such as 'Sand Fountain' (1969), the iconic ‘Breathing on the Picture Tube’ (1971), and ‘A Breeze in May’ (1974), based on the realization Show IX, Curtain Room (1965) at Utrecht’s Centraal Museum. The Curtain Room was also realized during Art Basel Unlimited 2016.
Also included in this presentation is the key work ‘Signing the Sky Above The Port of Amsterdam With an Aeroplane, 1969’ (photographic records of the iconic work entirely created in air and characterised by (eventual) absence that confirms his discovery in 1963 of air, weather and wind as visual material; exactly as stated in its title, an aircraft’s condensation trails were used to spell out Boezem’s surname in the sky, the ephemeral wording disappearing almost as soon as it was created). The presentation at Art Basel further includes works such as ‘Statement for the Catalogue, 19-2-1969’ (a fax to Harald Szeemann, included as artist’s project in the catalogue ‘Live in your Head. When Attitudes Become Form, Bern 1969’) and ‘Sculpture I Invite You, To Make Love On February 11th, 1978, at 22.00 Hours’ (that was sent to about 350 people in The Netherlands and abroad who worked in various fields in the artworld including Richard Serra, Jesus Rafael Soto, Gilbert and George, Edward Kienholz, and Daniel Spoerri), that further substantiate Boezem’s key position.
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