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ADA Rotterdam - Area for Debate and Art


View from the balcony of the residency
View from the balcony of the residency

ADA has started its residency period at AiR Berlin Alexanderplatz. During the working period at ABA the group is divided into smaller units’ of two members at a time. Each unit stays in the apartment for a period of three weeks. At the start of each third week working period, another ADA member arrives to replace one member of the unit.

ADA will use its (dis-)placement in Berlin as a starting point for the investigation on topics relating to the initiation, the performance of and the congregation around knowledge production. As part of its long-term investigation into collaborative and participatory practices, ADA will continue its research in Berlin in two parts. Firstly, by activating six reading sessions in which different texts will be discussed and secondly by organizing two, semi-public breakfast sessions with two members of ADA and selected participants from Berlin and abroad.

Please join us for welcome drinks with a view, on the coming Sunday, the 9th of September from 12.00 to 15.00 at ABA (10th floor), Alexanderstrasse 13, 10179 Berlin – Alexanderplatz.

For more information about the residency, please go to

Practical Information:
Sunday 09 September 2012 | 12:00 - 15:00
AiR Berlin Alexanderplatz, Alexanderstraße 13, 10179 Berlin
email: [javascript protected email address]
tel: +49-30-89569046

Translation: The monkey is gone/ He climbed into the tree and he is in the jungle/ He swings on a liana he grabs the banana. Done!  (Short story by Kiran Moti, 6 years old.)
Translation: The monkey is gone/ He climbed into the tree and he is in the jungle/ He swings on a liana he grabs the banana. Done! (Short story by Kiran Moti, 6 years old.)

Independent writer Moosje Goosen will lead a writing workshop taking place on three Sunday afternoons in ADA. The workshop is meant for anybody with an interest in writing but might be of specific interest to those artists and curators who use writing as part of their artistic practice.

Sunday May 13. 14:00 – 18:00hrs
Sunday May 20. 14:00 – 18:00hrs

Sunday June 17. 13:00 – 19:00hrs (Includes a simple dinner)

As Vladimir Nabokov said in one of his lectures: ‘Literature was not born the day when a boy crying ‘wolf, wolf’ came running out of the Neanderthal valley with a big gray wolf at his heels; literature was born on the day when a boy came crying ‘wolf, wolf’ and there was no wolf behind him.’ Writing is magic: any child in the process of learning to write the letter Aa Aa Aa, then b, c, and so forth, can easily remind you of this. We tend to forget that each letter was, initially, a drawing, crafted by the movement of our own hands: like any other drawing, these written lines can turn into a window to the world, this one or another.

At the same time, learning to write also means that letters lose their peculiarity, so that the written word is prone to become ‘just another’ outlet of language. In our everyday use of writing (beginning with school assignments, then, in our adult lives, the writing of e-mails, a grocery or to-do list, a message on a sticky note or ‘happy birthday’ on a postcard to an uncle) we learn to forget the pleasure of writing ‘wolf, wolf’, just to see where it – all the possible stories of a wolf – might lead to.

This workshop invites a re-cognition of ‘that crafty feeling’ of writing, as novelist Zadie Smith aptly calls it. By means of hands-on exercises, we will read and write collectively and learn what it – ‘wolf, wolf’ – could possibly mean along the way. After a four-week intermission of individual writing, the third and final session will be used for an in-depth group discussion of texts written by the workshop participants.

There will be a minimum of five and a maximum of eight participants in the writing workshop. Please reserve a place by sending an e-mail by the 1st of May at the latest to Esmé Valk (see contact details below). The cost for the three sessions is €75,-. Bring your own pens.

Moosje Goosen is an independent writer based in Rotterdam. She contributes regularly to Metropolis M and Frieze, and also writes in the framework of art exhibitions and events. She has written for, or in collaboration with a number of artists, such as Sara van der Heide and Isidoro Valcárcel Medina, and is a research/writing member of the Uqbar Foundation, initiated by artists Irene Kopelman and Mariana Castillo Deball. For Uqbar, she is currently in the process of developing a book series, titled A Certain Chinese Encyclopedia, the first two volumes of which (on phantom limbs and dinosaur fictions, respectively) will appear next year.

Practical Information:
Sunday 13 May 2012 | 14:00  18:00
Sunday 20 May 2012 | 14:00  18:00
Sunday 17 June 2012 | 13:00  19:00 including dinner
ADA studios, Delftsestraat 9-B, Rotterdam

email: [javascript protected email address]
tel: 06 48448322

ADA has been invited by independent curator Angela Serino to take part in a series of discussions and events in Kunsthuis SYB as part of her project On residency: an (in)visible production of A.I.R. programmes.

Why do artists choose to take part in a residency? In what ways do the structure of a residency differ from other existing supporting structures for artists, such as the gallery, the project space, the academy or the studio? How can a residency contribute to the development of artists today? Over the coming six weeks, these and other questions will be the focus of the programme On Residency or an (in)visible production, put together by independent curator Angela Serino.

The first two weekends of ‘On Residency’ will be marked by the design of a conceptual and material framework. Serino invited the Italian artist Paula Anziché to build her installation ‘Spaziando’, together with guests and visitors of Kunsthuis SYB. ‘Spaziando’ is a large and complex net of Lycra in which, during the programme, participants can move and nest themselves, as if it were a collective body. Through this collective, physical interaction with the work, ‘Spaziando’ creates an environment in which new thoughts and ideas can be developed and exchanged.

A second recurring theme in the programme ‘On Residency’ is the reading group, which assembles at different moments in Kunsthuis SYB. From a collection of texts, this reading group investigates the roles a residency can play in artistic production. The residency is mainly approached as a break from daily routine, as a prerequisite for an investigation into conditions of work and the possibilities to find a better balance between living and working. The reading group consists of the artists’ collectives ADA (Rotterdam) and The Living Room(s) (Amsterdam), and additionally the visual artist Elsbeth Ciesluk and the art historian Suzie Hermán.

The progress of the investigation can be followed on the ‘weblog’. There, you will find the texts that the reading group discusses. For those who are interested, it is possible to participate in the programme in Kunsthuis SYB by contacting A. Serino or Kunsthuis SYB by email or phone.

Angela Serino (1977, IT) is an independent curator. She graduated (cum laude) in Mass Communication at the University of Siena and moved to Amsterdam to attend the De Appel Curatorial programme in 2006. Since then she has curated several solo and group shows in institutions and art organisations, such as De Brakke Grond Amsterdam, Centraal Museum Utrecht, TENT. Rotterdam, and the European Cultural Foundation Amsterdam. In 2009 she curated RED A.i.R./Redlight Art Amsterdam, a project initiated by the City of Amsterdam, De Key/Principaal, SMBA and Kunstenaars&CO. Since 2010, Angela Serino has been part of the programming committee of Kunsthuis SYB.

Practical Information:
28 March  8 May 2012
Opening hours work period: every Saturday and Sunday from 13:00  17:00.
Kunsthuis SYB, Hoofdstraat 70, 9244 CP, Beetsterzwaag

email: [javascript protected email address]
tel: 06 43125542

Lightning over Water, (say Cut!) film-still, 1980
Lightning over Water, (say Cut!) film-still, 1980

Thursday 22 March | Yuki Yukite Shingun (The emperor’s naked army marches on)
Wednesday 4 April | Lightning over Water
Thursday 19 April | The thin blue line

Documentary films try to show, unearth and investigate certain truths and values of events taking place in front of the camera’s lense. They seem to suggest that what is being shown is a genuine event, with genuine people and that what you see is as unmediated as possible and hence not fiction. In this way documentaries as a genre open up an interesting space for the filmmaker through their potential to play with the expectations of the viewer. For example by staging or re-enacting past events with the use of actors begins to blur the distinction between fiction and reality, problematizing the relation between the camera and what is real.

The screening series Documenting Documentary contains three films that all use documentary style techniques, in order to examine the boundaries and the relationship between fiction and non-fiction. The screenings are intended as a departure point for discussion about the stylistic conventions and possibilities of documentaries in relation to truth and fiction, knowledge and power and the relation between the apparatus, the subject and the viewer. By integrating ‘behind the camera scenes’ and by creating an awareness of the camera, each of the three films reveal their own production system and in this way become self-reflective.

Yuki Yukite Shingun (The emperor’s naked army marches on) by Kazuo Hara, 1986
Thursday 22 March, 21.00 | Runtime: 122 min.

The first film screened is Yuki Yukite Shingun (The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On) by Kazuo Hara, 1986. This documentary revolves around 62-year-old Okuzaki Kenzo, survivor of the battlefields of New Guinea in World War II. Kenzo gained notoriety by shooting steel pinballs with a slingshot at Emperor Showa in protest against what he considered to be the rulers war crimes. Traveling around to do interviews with survivors and relatives, Kenzo finds the truth of the past hard to grasp, achieving only an important breakthrough when he confronts the ex-sergeant Yamada.

Lightning over Water by Wim Wenders and Nicholas Ray, 1980
Wednesday 4 April, 21.00 | Runtime: 91 min.

The second film we will show is Lightning over Water by Wim Wenders and Nicholas Ray. The film documents the last days of Nicholas Ray, who is dying of cancer. Wim Wenders travels to New York to help his friend Ray on his last movie. After discussing the idea they decide it is not realizable due to Ray’s health situation.
This ‘semi-documentary’ is an intense and moving portrait of Nicolas Ray and an interesting co-operation between two important filmmakers.

The thin blue line by Errol Morris, 1988
Thursday 19 April, 21.00 | Runtime: 103 min.

The third film in this series is The Thin Blue Line, directed by Errol Morris. The film shows us the true story of the arrest and conviction of Randall Adams, for the murder of a Dallas policeman in 1976. With its use of expressionistic re-enactments, interview material and music by Philip Glass, this film, structured as a documentary, launched a new kind of non-fiction filmmaking.

Practical Information:
Thursday 19 April 2012 | 21:00
ADA studios, Delftsestraat 9, Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]
tel: 0618819756

Škart, See-Saw Play-Grow, Installation view of the Serbian Pavilion of the 2010 Venice Biennale
Škart, See-Saw Play-Grow, Installation view of the Serbian Pavilion of the 2010 Venice Biennale

On 10 December ADA organizes the first edition of Breakfast at Noon, a new series of public events in which two or more guests are invited to ADA’s breakfast table to reflect on issues concerning the position of the artist and the way one speaks through his or her work.

For this first edition the guests will be the Belgrade based collective Škart and the artist duo Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum. Both guests have a practice, which connects exhibition making with working with groups and individuals in specific social contexts. ADA invites Škart, Jaio and van Gorkum to give a brief presentation of their work, and to discuss issues such as the collective art practice, the role of audience participation and the notion of free time in relation to artistic practice.

Škart is a collective founded in 1990 at the Faculty of Architecture in Belgrade. While experimenting through their work, they focus primarily between the medium of poetry and design. Architecture of the human relationships is their main concept. Through a constant flux within the collective which has been present since the very beginning, the members collaboratively work to develop new values. They are particularly capable, through the process of making, to embrace 'beautiful mistakes and tirelessly strive to combine work with pleasure. Recent exhibitions include the 2010 edition of the Venice Biennale of Architecture; My experience in notebook/Moje iskustvo u svesci, KCB gallery, Belgrade (2010) and The Origin of Wishes, Space Gallery, London (2009). Skart has also conceived and organised numerous workshops, such as Calendar of lies, Igalo, Montenegro (2010) and Protest Poster, with the group Cactus in London and Graz (2010).

Working collectively since 2001, Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum have worked with film, actions, publications, and installations to create projects that explore the agency of individuals and communities in the context of particular social and political climates. For Plaatselijke verordening (Local ordinance, 2010), the artists located six wooden billboards erected by the city of Rotterdam each time there are local elections to be used as surfaces for political postering. Having replaced the boards with new structures and transferred the old ones into an exhibition venue, Jaio and van Gorkum showed documentation of the territorial and pictorial struggle that had taken place as rival parties deployed their posters in a bid to win publicity. Solo projects include Quédense dentro y cierren las ventanas/ Stay inside. Close Windows and Doors, produced by Consonni, Bilbao, and Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory, Utrecht (2008). Group exhibitions include The People United Will Never Be Defeated, TENT Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam (2010); Gure Artea 2008, Sala Rekalde, Bilbao (2008).

Please Note: The breakfast will take place at the Nationaal Onderwijsmuseum in Rotterdam. Due to the limited amount of space available (15 guests maximum) you are kindly requested to reserve a spot via The entrance is free, including food and drinks.

Practical Information:
Saturday 10 December 2011 | 12:00 - 14:00
Nationaal Onderwijsmuseum, Nieuwemarkt 1a, Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]

Installation View, 2011, 4x4x3m, mixed media
Installation View, 2011, 4x4x3m, mixed media

ADA is pleased to host a talk by Dresden based artist Guido Reddersen, the current artist-in-residence at the Goethe Institute, Rotterdam.

In his artistic practice, Reddersen seeks to transform the perception of clearly identifiable objects and shapes by exposing layers of subjective and objective patterns of perception, classification and communication.

During his two-month stay in Rotterdam, Reddersen will be developping a phenomenological comparison between the cities of Dresden and Rotterdam. The results will feed into an installation dealing with what Reddersen calls “the culturally conditioned need to connect to everyday objects.”

Guido Reddersen (Jena, 1980) holds a masters degree from the College of Fine Arts in Dresden. He has participated in group exhibitions such as Hitch Hike, Cars, Omegna (I) and The Darkest Corner of the Whitest Cube, Kunsthaus Dresden, 2011; House Warming, Hopkins Hall, Columbus, USA, 2010. Solo exhibitions include Liebe und böse Objekte at Gallery Doppel De, Dresden, 2009.

Practical Information:
Wednesday 14 September 2011 | 20:00
ADA studios, Delftsestraat 9, Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]

ADA begins the new season with the 150th anniversary of an impenetrable chocolate recipe, which is to be found in a recently published book, Tatarî Oğuz Effendi in Basel – Reminiscences of a Journalist by Ben Wineblum.

ADA has invited the author of this inspirational book for a reading and a presentation during which the life and works of Tatarî Oğuz Effendi, the first of the two protagonists in Wineblum’s book and an exceptional Ottoman intellectual and adventurer, will be commemorated in Rotterdam for the first time.

As an addition to Wineblum’s reading, each guest will find the chance to indulge in the magical chocolate The Lore, which is produced by Beschle Chocolatier Suisse according to Tatarî’s yet-unseen recipe. Depending on the number of the guests, everyone will receive either one or two chocolate truffles as a gift. Following the reading and a discussion session, we will visit a collectively chosen site in the city to put the effect of The Lore to the test through an interpretation by Ben Wineblum:

You can enjoy the best from The Lore while you are listening to a concert, while watching a play, opera, or ballet, while reading a novel, a story, a poem, a petit tale, while viewing a painting, a sculpture, a performance. In short, at any moment, and in any place, where art is there to be experienced. Could you please reach in to your pockets, and feel the crate that is keeping The Lore safe and secure? If you could do this, then you are seconds away from enriching your experience. (From: Tatarî Oğuz Effendi in Basel – Reminiscences of a Journalist, Ben Wineblum, 2010.)

Should you wish to have more prelimenary information on the life of this Ottoman intellectual, please visit the Wikipedia link.

Ben Wineblum’s book and The Lore will be on sale only during the event. Therefore we urge you to come to the event on time, or even early.

Ben Wineblum (b.1981, Berlin) is an art critic and a freelance journalist who works for a variety of independent media agencies based in New York and California. He studied in South Africa and the USA, has won several awards and fellowships for his outstanding research and influential publications written extensively on the relationship between contemporary art, culture, and everyday life. For the past five years he has been working as a Europe media correspondent. In September 2010, he relocated and is now reporting from Australia, Brisbane. This is his first book.

Practical Information:
Sunday 04 September 2011 | 15:00 - 17:00
ADA studios, Delftsestraat 9, Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]

The Spiral Staircase
The Spiral Staircase

In the month of August Cinema Sunset will be screening four must-see black and white film classics. The films will start around sunset without an introduction. So bring your after-sun lotion and your friends to settle down for the evening…

Wednesday August 3 | The Servant | 21:00
Wednesday August 10 | Le Quatre Cents Coups | 21:00
Wednesday August 17 | The Spiral Staircase | 21:00
Wednesday August 24 | The Seventh Seal | 21:00

August 3 | 21:00 -23:00
The Servant
Release: 1963
Runtime: 112 mins
Director: Joseph Losey
Cast: Dirk Bogarde, Sarah Miles and Wendey Craig

The dainty Oxbridge twit aristocrat Tony moves to London and hires a servant Hugo Barret. Tonys prudish girlfriend Susan senses something sinister about Barrett and her contentious relationship with him begins to affect her romance with Tony. As their relationship falters, Barret starts to expand his powers over his master”. Via an intricate turning of the tables Tony slowly loses his authority and becomes enslaved to his own employee.

August 10 | 21:00 -23:00
Les Quatre Cents Coups
Release: 1959
Runtime: 99 mins
Director: Francois Truffaut
Cast: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Albert Rémy and Claire Maurier

The young Parisian boy Antoine Doinel who is misunderstood by his parents and schoolteachers, dashes into a life of crime. Like most kids, he gets into more trouble for trying to do good rather than for his actual trespasses. He skips school, sneaks into movies, ans runs away from home. For his feature-film debut, critic-turned-director François Truffaut drew inspiration from his own troubled childhood. Originally intended as a 20-minute short, Les Quatre Cents Coups was expanded into a feature when Truffaut decided to elaborate on his self-analysis. The film has been named the cradle of the French New Wave Cinema and displays many of the characteristic traits of the movement.

August 17 | 21:00 -23:00
The Spiral Staircase
Release: 1945
Runtime: 83 mins
Director: Robert Siodmak
Cast: Dorothy McGuire, George Brent and Ethel Barrymore

The young beautiful Helen, mute because of a childhood trauma, works in the household of Mrs. Warren. Warren’s two sons Steven and Albert also live in the house and Helen develops a crush on the latter. Mrs. Warren becomes concerned for Helen’s safety when a rash of murders involving 'women with afflictions hits the neighborhood. When the murderer enters the house Helen’s life is in serious danger. Director Robert Siodmak well known for his atmospheric suspense films used all kinds of innovative plot devices to increase a sense of foreboding. Throughout the story Helen is observed through the eyes of her stalker, who the audience sees only as a pair of menacing eyes.

August 24 | 21:00 -23:00
The Seventh Seal
Release: 1957
Runtime: 96 mins
Director: Ingmar Bergman
Cast: Max von Sydow, Gunnar Björnstrand and Bengt Ekerot

Set in the 14th century, a medieval knight and his squire return home after ten years in the Crusades to find their land ravaged by the Plague. The Black Death arrives to take the knight’s life but the latter succeeds in challenging Death to a chess game. During their game the knight becomes determined to find answers to his questions about life, death and the existence of God. The Seventh Seal has been declared Bergman’s masterpiece and became an often-cited classic in world cinema.

Practical Information:
Wednesday 24 August 2011 | 21:00 - 23:30
ADA studios|Delftsestraat 9|Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]

As part of ADAs investigation into collaborative and participatory practices, ADA initiates a short-term reading group for the duration of it’s work period at BRAK#3 in Duende, in the month of April.

During six-sessions, texts reflecting on artistic production, modes of communication, political positioning and the meaning produced, will be jointly and actively explored in a friendly and relaxed environment. This short-term exercise is intended to enable practical exploration of the collective endeavor to encounter each other through a collaborative working practice. The subject matter of the reading group acts as an introduction to ADA’s current inquiry, which it will continue reflecting on in the coming year through its public program.

ADA cordially invites you to join in the reading of the following texts:

Session 1
Tuesday 5th of April | 19:30-22:30
The Author as Producer, by Walter Benjamin. And in addition the short text The Artist as Producer in Times of Crisis by Okwui Enwezor.

Session 2
Sunday 10th of April | 15:00-18:00
The Emancipated Spectator, pp. 1-23, by Jacques Rancière.

Session 3
Monday 11th of April | 19:30-22:30
The Collaborative Turn, by Maria Lind.

Session 4
Wednesday 13th of April | 19:30-22:30
The Demands and Challenges of Committed Participation, by Mika Hannula.

Session 5
Thursday 21st of April | 19:30-22:30
Maybe it would be better if we worked in groups of three? Part 1 & 2 of The Discursive, by Liam Gillick.

Session 6
Monday 25th of April | 19:30-22:30
Tolerance as an Ideological Category, by Slavoj Žižek.

Please Note: read the text before attending the reading session. There will not be a full reading of the text during the session but a discussion on sections of the texts brought up by anyone who is taking part in the reading group.

Additionally to the activity of exploring the texts together, a beautiful, brand new, state-of-the-art, ping-pong table is made available by ADA for all level of sporting and recreational fun. The studio is open to use daily for play and reading from 10:00-19:30.

Practical Information:
Monday 04 April  Sunday 01 May 2011
Duende | the Hessen Studio
Tamboerstraat 9, 3034 PT, Rotterdam

email: [javascript protected email address]
tel: 06-23980265

During Art Rotterdam ADA participates in the side programme of RAiR #3 Guest House, taking place at the Zuiderster building next to the Rijnhaven metro station. The exhibition brings together the works of former residents of the Rotterdam based artist initiatives.

On 12 February from noon to 6pm, ADA presents an archive of projects that they have developed during the past two years. The archive can be browsed by means of objects that associatively represent the original projects. ADAs members are present to talk about the projects and to show the material to the visitors. Amongst other things it is possible to see video lectures of artist and theorist Mark Pimlott and artist Matts Leiderstam. There are also publications on display, as well as an audio tour, all made by the members of ADA.

Practical Information:
Saturday 12 February 2011 | 12:00 - 18:00
Zuiderster building, Hillelaan 28, Rotterdam
email: [javascript protected email address]

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Would it be better if we worked in groups of two...?
ADA's Cabinet: On residency: an (in)visible production of A.I.R. programmes
Breakfast at Noon with Škart and Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum