Coaching trajectory Nieuw & Meer: HF-welding / airtight sculptures

HF-welding machine, photo by Iris Woutera.

Coaching trajectory Nieuw & Meer: HF-welding / airtight sculptures

10-2020/ 12-2020

For three months, Oct-Dec 2020, I was Artist in Residence at Nieuw & Meer in Amsterdam. In 2018 I could do a first Artist in Residence here. Subsequently, I had the opportunity to return to follow a coaching trajectory with air sculpturist Rens Bouma.

Nieuw & Meer

Over 100 artists and affiliated businesses have settled on an area of approx. 9000 m2. In 1988, the former Rijksdomeinen’s storehouse for munitions was squatted and soon after legalized. To accommodate a diverse variety of visual and applied arts are represented. Located in a natural and ecological niche part of the Hoofdgroenstructuur of Amsterdam (Ecological Main Structure) at the edge of the Amsterdam Forest. Nieuw & Meer is managed ecologically. (https://nieuwenmeer.nl, n.d.)

Spread over two years, I lived and worked at Nieuw & Meer for six months. What I found significant about my stay was the direct inspiring contact with nature, the possibility to meet exceptional artists, and to be introduced to disciplines less familiar to me: for instance, the processing of metal. In 2018 I worked on the presentation of the one-off performance Crackleware. In both 2018 and 2020, the main reason for my stay was to work on the project BLOB.

Material try-outs HF-welding, photo by Iris Woutera.

BLOB Binary Large Object.

A new sculpture work including a performance, video and photography/ drawings.

This work explores the human body dealing with strong emotions like 'fear', resulting in our most basic reactions; fleeing, fighting and freezing.

I will conduct research on literature and movement techniques. And react on this research by making sculpture worksthat have a certain weight and tenacity.


Ever since I met Rens Bouma (visual artist) in her atelier at Nieuw & Meer in 2018,

I wanted to learn from her new techniques, which turned out to be possible in 2020. Bouma developed several ways to capture air with airtight materials and techniques that result in floating, seemingly weightless objects.

During three months, I could follow an intensive coaching trajectory. Bouma could give an introduction to new plastics and materials and how to process these materials through HF-welding (High-Frequency Welding Machine). It was inspiring to start a whole new domain, exploring the working of gravity.

Material try-outs HF-welding, photo by Iris Woutera.

Presentation/ Covid-19

Due to measures with regards to Covid-19, my research presentation was cancelled at the end of my residency in 2020. As well I stumbled on the fact, that the work BLOB involved ‘touch’ as a main sensory instrument, and this seemed not possible in the pandemic. That is why I postponed the development of the project BLOB to October 2021 and started working on a new project called Nerve, which integrates social distancing in an instinctive manner.


Performers Anna Riley-Shepard, Mayke van Veldhuizen, Fernanda Gonzales Morales, Rosanna ter Steege

Sound artist Dianne Verdonk