The 25th October 2015 saw the death of British historian, writer and intellectual Lisa Jardine, who wrote on a wide range of subjects including influential work on historical relations between England and the Netherlands.
The Low Countries
Deze Engelstalige blog, gelinkt aan het jaarboek The Low Countries, brengt nieuws over taal, cultuur en maatschappij in de Lage Landen voor een breed buitenlands publiek.
A recently published poetry anthology 100 Dutch-Language Poems. From the Medieval Period to the Present Day gives readers of English a taste of Dutch-language poetry, with 100 selected poems to represent 1000 years of literary history, from early writing by an anonymous scribe to contemporary writers, reflecting the canon of Dutch literature.
The touring exhibition Pleasure and Piety, showing paintings by Dutch artist Joachim Wtewael (1566–1638), has achieved great success in the United States, already receiving as many as 105,000 at Washington D.C.’s National Gallery of Art, where it was on show until 4th October.
Pleasure and Piety now proceeds to The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, where high levels of interest are also expected as of 1 November 2015.
Wtewael was a painter, successful flax merchant and town councillor of Utrecht. The exhibition shows how the artist plays with the themes of love and lust. The open eroticism of the paintings often led to censorship in the past.
On Tuesday 27 October University College London’s Centre for Low Countries Studies has hosted the launch of Herman Gorter: Poems of 1890, a new translation of Herman Gorter's poetry by Paul Vincent, published by UCL Press.The poetry volume is available free in electronic form from UCL’s website. You can find it here. Read more about Gorter in this yearbook article by Paul Vincent.
The 15th edition of Van Dale’s flagship Dutch dictionary, the Dikke Van Dale, was launched earlier in October 2015. The dictionary is available on paper and online. The three volumes of the print edition are thicker than ever, produced in colour with illustrations. The first copy was ceremonially handed to poet and writer Bart Chabot at an event on 5 October.
On 8 October, London’s 88-Gallery opened a selling exhibition of previously unseen works by Flemish street photographer Herman Selleslags, including images of music, film and sport icons of the 1960s and 1970s.
Most of his work is in black and white, characterised by the use of natural light instead of flash and a focus on moments of spontaneity rather than intentional poses.
Selleslags’ work has never been shown outside Belgium before, so this is a unique opportunity to see rare images of twentieth century icons.
Many literary magazines in the Netherlands are struggling but recent initiative Das Magazin is flourishing on innovative reader events and crowdfunding. Having organised a range of successful events in the Netherlands and Flanders, they are now bringing a festival to London on 22 November 2015.
Francine Houben, director of Dutch architect firm Mecanoo, has been asked to lead the grand-scale renovation of New York Public Library (NYPL) on Fifth Avenue in a project set to cost 266 million euros. The classic building in the centre of Manhattan is visited annually by millions of tourists and urgently needs renovating, with talks under way for more than a decade.
Houben and her firm Mecanoo have been chosen because of their award-winning record around the world and accessible designs. The selection committee will certainly have been impressed by Houben’s Library of Birmingham, which she describes as a ‘people’s palace’. Visitor numbers have doubled since the opening in 2013.
Dutch curator, writer and collector Els Barents has won the Royal Photographic Society’s Colin Ford Award for curators. Barents is the former director of the photography museum Huis Marseille in Amsterdam.
She has paved the way for a flourishing photo culture in The Netherlands, acquiring and exhibiting contemporary photographs for a range of institutions.
Last summer, an intern from Princeton, Zoe Perot,, worked at Ons Erfdeel vzw, publisher of The Low Countries Yearbook. In this blog, she describes her two weeks with us. "This was followed by what I was to learn was a rather ‘Belgian’ lunch."