Gilleam Trapenberg at Foam

Gilleam Trapenberg‘s solo exhibition at Foam showcases an exploration deeply rooted in his continuous quest to reevaluate Caribbean representation and imagery. Titled ‘Unbé t’aweró,’ this exhibition delves into Trapenberg’s personal interpretation of Curaçao’s national identity, where he was born and raised.

Through his photographs, he intertwines warm childhood memories with echoes of colonial history, subtle hints of political challenges, and individual expressions of pride and identity. Trapenberg’s exhibition at Foam invites viewers to delve into his unique perspective on Caribbean culture and heritage through his unique lens.

Gilleam Trapenberg’s solo exhibition at Foam runs from July 16th to September 12th, 2021. Click here or on the button below to learn more.

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ABOUT Gilleam Trapenberg

Born in 1991 in Willemstad, Curaçao
Lives and works in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Born and raised in Curaçao, visual artist Gilleam Trapenberg (b. 1991) now lives and works in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Orbiting his homeland, his creative projects look closely at the fabric of Curaçao’s social landscape, probing at the island’s many paradoxes. He searches beneath the portrayals and tropes of Caribbean life that dominate (Western) media cycles, using the camera to create necessary counter-images.

Occasionally, though, Trapenberg is himself seduced by the allure of the exported picture- postcard; on European shores, nostalgia and longing take hold, perspectives drift, and memories of home are easily romanticised. For the artist, this experience of a perpetual limbo between two distinct places – connected by the fraught legacies of colonialism, enduring flows of goods and people, or even the mass tourism industry – is a growing focal point of his work.

A graduate of The Hague’s Royal Academy of Art, Trapenberg first moved to the Netherlands at 19 years old. In the years since, his works have been exhibited at institutions such as Foam Photography Museum and Stedelik Museum Amsterdam, whilst his first photobook – Big Papi – was published in 2017. He was the 2020 recipient of Foam’s Florentine Riem Vis grant and is one of five shortlisted artists for the Taylor Wessing Photo Portrait Prize 2023. The shortlisted works will soon be exhibited at London’s National Portrait Gallery.