Upcoming Event: RM Sunday Session | Focus On: Erwin Olaf (Curator’s Tour)

We are pleased to invite you to a new RM Sunday Session. This Sunday, October 4th at 2:00 p.m., our in-house curator Lars Been will guide your through our latest presentation: UNSEEN at the gallery. During the Curator’s Tour Lars will talk about the current works on view by Erwin Olaf.⁠

Erwin Olaf (NL, 1959) recently joined Galerie Ron Mandos and presented a new series titled April Fool 2020. For his upcoming solo exhibition at the gallery in Spring 2021, Olaf is working on a series about the grandeur of nature and man’s conceit. For Wabi Subi, Sarracenia and Ivy, the artist shows several still-lives from the series Fall (2008). These works evoke a strange feeling of distance and quietude. The tranquil still-lives with flowers presented in simple ceramic vases have an almost meditative effect on the viewer. The dried or cut flowers in the series Fall refer to the colors of autumn, but also to a fateful sense of demise. The spindly floral arrangements function as a sharp reminder of how quickly beauty fades.⁠

UNSEEN at the gallery⁠ RM Sunday Session | Focus On: Erwin Olaf⁠ Date: Sunday 4 October, 2020⁠ Curator’s Tour: 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.⁠ Location: Galerie Ron Mandos, Prinsengracht 282⁠

Please note that RSVP is mandatory. RSVP via sheila@ronmandos.nl.

ABOUT Erwin Olaf

Erwin Olaf (1959-2023) was known for his diverse practice that centered around society’s marginalized individuals, including people of color, and the LGBTQ+ community. In 2019, Olaf became a Knight of the Order of the Lion of the Netherlands after 500 works from his oeuvre were added to the collection of the Rijksmuseum. Taco Dibbits, Rijksmuseum director, called Olaf “one of the most important photographers of the final quarter of the 20th century”.

In 2018, Olaf completed a triptych of monumental photographic and filmic tableaux portraying periods of seismic change in major world cities, and the citizens embraced and othered by their urban progress. Like much of his work, it is contextualized by complex race relations, the devastation of economic divisions, and the complications of sexuality. Olaf maintained an activistic approach to equality throughout his 40-year career after starting out documenting pre-AIDS gay liberation in Amsterdam’s nightlife in the 1980s.

A bold and sometimes controversial approach earned the artist a number of prestigious collaborations, from Vogue and Louis Vuitton, to the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. He served as the official portrait artist for the Dutch royal family in 2017, and designed the national side of the euro coins for King Willem-Alexander in 2013. He was awarded the Netherlands’ prestigious Johannes Vermeer Award, as well as Photographer of the Year at the International Color Awards, and Kunstbeeld magazine’s Dutch Artist of the Year. In 2023, His Majesty the King Willem-Alexander awarded him the Medal of Honor for Art and Science of the Order of the House of Orange.

Erwin Olaf exhibited worldwide, including Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga, Málaga, Spain; Museu da Imagem e do Som, São Paulo, Brazil; Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, Germany; Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA; and Museo de Arte Contemporáneo, Santiago, Chile. In the spring of 2019, Olaf’s work was the subject of a double exhibition at Kunstmuseum The Hague and The Hague Museum of Photography, as well as a solo exhibition at the Shanghai Center of Photography. In 2021, Erwin Olaf had his first solo exhibition Im Wald at Galerie Ron Mandos and mounted a large survey exhibition at Kunsthalle München, Germany.

Olaf’s work is included in numerous private and public collections, such as the Rijksmuseum and Stedelijk Museum, both in Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, Paris, France; Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany; Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, The Netherlands; North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, United States; Art Progressive Collection, United States; and the Pushkin Museum, Moscow, Russia.

Visit the artist’s website here.