Monday, 14 June 2010

We've got a winner!

Martijn van Santen, who used to be in our class at the Willem de Kooning Academy, has won the VPRO debut prize 2010 for his comic book Werk in uitvoering (Work in Progress)! He received his award, a shitload of money, last week at the Haarlemse Stripdagen. The book was indeed a work in progress for a long time, he has been working on it for years, so it's great to see his hard labour being rewarded. The drawings are fantastic (Martijn is really a proper comic artist) and the jury was raving about the intelligent yet funny story. Buy the book at one of the Selexyz book shops or visit Martijn's website to order directly from the artist himself.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Soul, Steel and Show

I was just surfing a bit, checking out some music blogs when I suddenly stumbled on this post about The Dutch Rhythm Steel & Show Band at the Funk my Soul blog. Having a soft spot for the steel drum I immediately downloaded the MP3s this kind blogger had ripped off the LP Soul, Steel and Show. It was - I kid you not - the best thing I heard in a long time! This album is such a gem (and priced accordingly.. it is very sought after), I just have to share it with you.

The Dutch Rhythm Steel & Show Band consists of musicians originally from Suriname and Trinidad and apparently they had several hits in the Netherlands and Germany in the seventies. I learned a few other interesting facts about the formation on the extensive Zaanse Pophistorie website. Like that they were founded by Adolf J. Tevreden, that their manager was Joop Koekkoek (which I found funny because that's my dad's name), that they were sampled by DJ Shadow and that they're still together. So I'm wondering: when's their next show??

Dutch Rhythm Steel & Show Band - Theme From Shaft. Get it here (YSI).

Dutch Rhythm Steel & Show Band - Feelin' Allright. Get it here (YSI).

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Where there's a Street With No Name

It’s not always easy for the Dolls to be living in different countries. We miss each other a lot. During the day I miss not working together (thank god for Skype), at night I miss not partying together and I miss the other Doll dearly at certain other occasions, like heart breaks and birthdays for example…

We hadn’t seen each other since March so we had all the more reason to meet up for my birthday and celebrate! We chose to meet sort of half way in Ghent, Belgium. We’d never been there before but we heard lots of good things about it. And rightfully so! We had a great time. We went on a boat tour through all the pretty canals and we ate proper fries with delicious Belgian mayonnaise (slightly more sour than Dutch mayo). We went to the excellent museum for contemporary art S.M.A.K. and to a crafty market (so nice to be on the other side of the stall for once!). We enjoyed Belgium beer in the sun and went clubbing till the wee hours. And of course we went for some (secondhand) shopping. Geeske extended her collection of weird objects with eyes and iffy 80s pop singles, while I bought some kitchenalia to add to my collection of food shaped objects (my latest obsession - also added to my collection that weekend: a hamburger phone, a birthday gift from my dear friends).

But what I loved most about Ghent were the street names. Like…

Little Shaking Fish Steet

Smut Street or Sludge Street.

And what about...
Zonder-Naamstraat - Street With No Name
Pensmarkt - Paunch or Gut Market
Kluizenaarstraat - Hermit Street
Pekelharing - Pickeled Herring
Heilige-Geeststraat - Holy Spirit Street
Gelukstraat - Lucky Street
Kapucijnenham - Capuchinham
Zwartezustersstraat - Black Sisters Street

But my absolute favourite was…

Little Street With No End

Which was of course a dead end street. Aah, gotta love the Belgians!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Illustratie Biennale!

This saturday will be the first edition of an event called Illustratie Biennale. Which is (as you might think) all about dutch illustration and design! Some of my personal heroes will be there, so exciting..

The event will be held in Haarlem and was initiative of the famous Piet Zwart Institute, a centre for postgraduate studies connected to the Willem de Kooning Academy and responsible for some great names in design-land. The place will be divided in several different areas with exhibitions, a shop and a digital presentation with over a hundred designers! I will be involved in the shop part where I will be selling some Dutch Dolls stuff and some zines called zo ordinair (so tacky) with solo-art (see the picture above!). I am also part of the digital exhibition with some drawings... and will be playing some tunes during the day.

The biennale will be opened at 11.30u by Joost Zwart and will be finished at 18.00u. Take a look at the website for more info!