After catching the Eurostar I went to my office in Amsterdam for four days to work… and to see two of my art pieces displayed in two museums: Straat and the Hermitage.

This time I stayed at the funky Fletcher hotel, and tried a new and interesting restaurant (A2). But most importantly, I had two of my pieces in display.

One was at the absolutely wonderful Straat Museum for Graffiti and Street Art. Amongst monumental pieces by graffiti and street art masters, I created a tiny one in combination with Jad El Khoury’s (Lebanon, 1988) Care Portal (2022) Shutter with bullet holes. Through his public interventions, Jad El Khoury transforms memories of the Lebanese civil war into messages of hope. His main motivation is drawing attention to political and social issues. The holes in the exhibited shutter are a direct consequence of explosions and hails of bullets. Jad invited me to share a healing and personal message in a post-it with people in war zones. By placing it in a bullet hole the grey shutter slowly becomes a colorful panorama of hope. The messages in the shutter will eventually be passed on through keywords to street artists in different war zones worldwide. These artists will work with the keywords in their own surroundings and depict the message in a series of unique artworks. These new works will be photographed and will return to STRAAT as pictures, to be added to the original work, the shutter as a photo exhibition. Part of the proceeds from the pictures will be donated to several NGO’s dedicated to humanitarian Care Portal is a collaboration between Jad El Khoury, STRAAT and the ME Art Gallery Amsterdam.

My message is titled ‘War1’ which plays with the phonetics of ‘war’ \ ˈwȯr \ and the content of the piece “We’re one”.

The second one was displayed at The Hermitage Amsterdam, a venue for art exhibitions with loans from the vast treasury of the Hermitage St Petersburg (home to over three million objects), in the Museum van de Geest - Museum of the Mind (European Museum of the Year 2022). I was interested in the exhibition ‘31553580 (obsessie/obsession): numbers and schedules’, but ‘For the Love of Art’ ended up being a lot more interesting.

In any case, Museum van de Geest | Outsider Art in Amsterdam is the only museum in the Netherlands with a large (international) Outsider Art collection. This is art produced by those who are art world – and often social – outsiders. Through their work, they show their inner world without being concerned by the opinions of the outside world.

My non-commissioned piece ‘Still Tagging?’ is yet another playful interaction between the title and the content (“TAG”), being a self-reference to the evolution of the origins of Graffiti (Cornbread’s tagging) into the Street Art we admire today, which has made it into galleries, collections, and museums. A full circle of “Outsider art - Mainstream art”.

Here are many pictures.