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Kasteel Groeneveld

A landscape is not a still life, but is dynamic. It is subject to change and is constantly in motion. This perennial exhibition shows the relationship between man and nature and the landscapes that have developed as a result. The idea for the exhibition is based on an essay by Professor Matthijs Schouten for Kasteel Groeneveld. He distinguishes four types of landscape: wilderness – in which man is subjected to nature, the Arcadian landscape – in which man lives in a certain harmony with the landscape and in which history is recognizable, the rational landscape – a landscape completely man-made – and ultimately the (fast) changing postmodern landscape. Each type of landscape says something about the perception of a landscape and the extent to which it offers starting points in orientation in space and time.

DWARS ontwerp translated the essay by Mathijs Schouten into a concept for an exhibition in which the perception of the landscape types is central and how they form a source of inspiration for Dutch artists. As a support for the exhibition, we have translated the landscape types into a graphic visual language. This forms the guideline on the basis of which the visitor is guided through the exhibition.

The exhibition opens with a video panorama, consisting of 8 screens, in which the landscape types are shown through moving images of actual landscapes as they can still be found in the Netherlands. Modular seating furniture offers a view on the film images around and can easily be converted for group receipts. The next part of the exhibition shows the landscape as a source of inspiration for Dutch artists such as poets, painters, photographers, illustrators and designers. 

Visitors wander past the artworks in three spatial objects, so-called ‘spheres’. On the outside the spheres look the same, inside each sphere breathes a different type of landscape. The visual language, the collection of artworks, the color of the walls, the philosophical questions asked, together they paint a picture of how wilderness, the Arcadian landscape and the rational landscape are experienced and visualized by the artists. The layout of the spheres can be adjusted during the course of the exhibition by the custom developed modular hanging system. Paintings, screens, showcases or lighting can easily be moved or exchanged.

The postmodern landscape type – a development in which we create entirely new landscapes that soon will be replaced with an entirely different landscape: a kind of hyper landscape – requires a dynamic exhibit. DWARS ontwerp designed and developed a projected 3D computer game in which the visitors can change the landscape on a virtual island. Overbuild the wilderness with flats? More green in the city? Everything is possible! All changes in the landscape are recorded during the entire duration of the exhibition. And that visualizes what we find important in the landscape!

Current themes related to the Dutch landscape and its layout are highlighted in multimedial and interactive presentations on the wall for temporary exhibitions. Themes such as the plans for the New Dutch Water Line, Waterpark Het Lankheet, the route design for the A27 motorway and where the number of windmills can be expanded in the Netherlands. This wall also uses the modular hanging system, which makes it easy to change the presentations.

client: Kasteel Groeneveld – previously the information center of the Ministry of agriculture, nature and food quality in Baarn
initiator: Sim Visser – former director of Kasteel Groeneveld
guest curator: Matthijs Schouten – professor university of Wageningen, Cork and Galway (Ireland), senior strategist Staatsbosbeheer
project management: Ingeborg Snelleman
story line, concept & design exhibition: DWARS ontwerp – Miriam de Lange, Mark Schulte, Maurits van Ballegooijen (trainee)
film panorama: Jacques Leerssen & Erris van Ginkel – Moodfactory
curating of the collection: Matthijs Schouten & Marcel van Ool – Staatsbosbeheer, Wilfried Lentz – Gallery Wilfried Lentz Rotterdam, Adriaan Haartsen – consultancy firm Lantschap, Miriam de Lange – DWARS ontwerp, Ingeborg Snelleman – Kasteel Groeneveld
exhibition construction: H2B from Amsterdam
technical support: John Klok – Technical Service Kasteel Groeneveld
year: 2007 – 2010

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