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mijn-dijn
Installation in semi-public space (2015)
Glass, red neon gas, Perspex, iron
80 deep x 182 wide x 400 cm high

mijn-dijn ('mine-thine') is a neon installation mounted on a pole on the patio outside the museum Schunck* in Heerlen, NL, alternately showing the words 'mijn' ('mine') and 'dijn' ('thine').

The work symbolizes the accumulation of capital during the time the mines were open in the area around the city of Heerlen. South Limburg's resources were exploited for the benefit of "Holland", making it a sort of colony burdened with taxes and levies which have colored the relationship between the "North" and the "South" to this day.

The installation mijn-dijn was inspired by the pamphlet 'Carboonkolonisatie' (1974) by artist, cultural critc and former senator Nic Tummers. In this writing he perceives aspects of colonialism in the history of the South Limburg coalfields and describes their influence over the society which developed there.

For this exhibition I also realized the work 'Pabrik Gula' ('Sugar Factory') (2015): a set of forty slides of workers at a sugar factory in Jogjakarta, Indonesia, where I live part of the year. These portraits of comtemporary industrial production are accompanied by a soundscape based on original factory sounds by fellow artist Charly van Rest.

The two works 'mijn-dijn' and 'Pabrik Gula' draw subtle parallels between Java and Limburg, complete with an idea of who and what is "Hollandish". It's not the first time these cultural similarities have been pointed out. In an interview Jakarta-based journalist Step Vaessen -also a Limburger by birth- observed that "the Javanese are just like Limburgers". By partly living in Jogjakarta I myself noticed Javanese are in general shy, indirect and (seem to be) relatively impressed by Westerners.

Exhibition: Oét d'r Sjtub (Out of the Dust), group show with Melanie Bonajo, Roger Cremers, Chaim van Luit, Danae Moons, Sandro Setola, Su Tomesen
Curator: Lene ter Haar
Location: Museum Schunck*, Heerlen, NL
Exhibition period: March 6 till June 7, 2015
Concept and design: Su Tomesen i.c.w. Hans van Dijk of Qneon Rotterdam

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