Our great friend Ella Arps and her historic gallery (www.arpsgallery.com) organized the D’Artagnan event last Friday. She kindly contributes this complete report of the event, together with some exciting new developments that have arisen in the wake of it.
We started at 8.30 p.m. The theatre of the Foundation Perdu was made up beautifully and we had some pictures of D. on a grid against black curtains. We had tables with chairs and snacks and then there was the rostrum. The public mounted to about 75 persons, including:
- the director of the Amsterdam Outsider Gallery that is situated next to the Hermitage on the Amstel, with his wife and his staff. He is a friend of mine, we work together.
- the owner of the Gallery Moderne, who was one of the founders of the Cobra Museum
- the widow of Herman Krikhaar who was one of the founders of the Cobra collection
- the owner of the hotel Dikker&Thijs who had already bought a work by D. - the one that is painted on the shoebox
- There were some well know poets
- There was the filmmaker Anita Imhari who made a film of the speeches.
The program was as follows:
walk in and a drink while the D’Artagnan film by Raspa was shown
1. opening words by the director of the theater
2. lecture by myself about 30 minutes with a full powerpoint about the life of D.
3. great lecture about D. and art-brut, by Lucas Husgen, which you can see this on the site of the writer, but it is in Dutch of course
4. break with drinks and sweets and a display on the screen of all the masks of D. also the masks in other paintings…
5. the young and wonderful poet Martijn den Oude (I translated his poems into English, and I am waiting for the approval of the poet)
6. the famous poetress Anne Vegter
7. the film by Alberto Felicetti
There was a lot of kissing and applause and admiration and warm feelings, also between people that before this evening did not know each other.
we finished at about 11 and then we partied on invitation of Arpsgallery untill 2 a.m.!!!
There was a lot of good wine and good food and it took me a leg from my table of fortune, for the good case!!! The day after I received many nice mails about the joyful happy evening.
Now there is some extra good news:
The director of the Amsterdam Outsiders Gallery wants to book a full exhibition of the works and film and everything about Ele d”Artagnan in 2014.
Of course they will pay the costs, they are subsidized by the Catholic social foundation that is called Cordaan and is dedicated to outsiders, roofless, homeless and documentless people.
And maybe, once we will have the whole exhibition completed and professionally ready, I might again contact my dear friend in the board of the Guggenheim, at least we could work out a new book in English, printed in high quality!
Or we might find a way to connect with the Santa Maria della Pietà in Venice and make use of the circle of friends of the Guggenheim, considering our strongest point that Cordaan in Amsterdam is of catholic nature and they are capable and have the means to bring this to a good end!!!!