Unfathomable Water – exhibition 2022-2023 Stadsmuseum Woerden
The city of Woerden, like large parts of the Western Netherlands, has for centuries a relationship with water. But actually it is not about water, it’s about land. People want to use the land to live on and grow food. Water is – except for irrigation – mainly an obstacle. Over the centuries we have become good at controlling water and water levels. But this progress has come at a price, for example the subsidence of the soil and salinization.
Delta areas may not be suitable for intensive habitation and agriculture. We are confronted with climate change, rising sea levels or long dry summers. The tension in the relationship between water and land is once again growing. That is what my artworks for this exhibition are about.
In the DREAMSCAPES series I work in my studio on a large studio table. On it I make landscapes that I photograph in such a way that there is a real sense of space. For this exhibition I made a water table and started experimenting with clay, water and light. The two photos and the first Dreamscape video are the result.
DREAMSCAPES – photo series
‘The deep horizon with its primordial light is full of mystery. There is a timelessness here… “a space beyond time”. These photos draw us into the sacred present within the spaciousness and silent stillness inside.’
– Shane Conroy, Mexico.
In his DREAMSCAPE photos Rob Sweere (1963, Arnhem, The Netherlands) is creating spacious landscapes. Not by travelling around the world searching for different surroundings but by staying inside his studio. He creates his landscapes on a large table and uses his photography skills and playful energy to create the illusion of large spaces.
It is this illusion that interests him. The world as we know it, is it true? Or is it an illusion? Indian philosophy talks about our everyday world as Maya, the world of illusions. With our mind we create this world and because of our ignorance we perceive it as true and real. What we see and experience is a projection of our own mind. We create our own world.
When we are awake we say that this is the real world, when we dream we say it is not real. However, is there a difference?
Recent developments in the world are challenging the concept of truth. Politicians are making up their own stories and act consequently. Scientific truths are not relevant anymore, the truth is what we feel. On the internet people disappear in truth bubbles and find themselves and their truth acknowledged over and over again.
Daily-world, dream-world, internet-world are all true. My world, your world.