Jordy van den Nieuwendijk
The striking of the clock

Oct. 1, 2016 – Jan. 8, 2017 This exhibition has ended
The Kunsthal Rotterdam is presenting a solo exhibition with 45 new paintings and a 24-metre wall relief by the up and coming multi-talent and artist Jordy van den Nieuwendijk (1985). His colourful paintings bring everyday objects to life with energy and a generous dose of humour. Van den Nieuwendijk produces paintings, drawings, short films and digitals in record time. The striking of the clock’ focuses on the paintings of an artist who has mastered every medium and appropriated a diversity of techniques. The bright colours, lines and clearly recognisable subjects – hats, vegetables, plants, fire, smoke, motorbikes – afford an opportunity to philosophise about his work and to discover all kinds of things in it. Van den Nieuwendijk’s fresh vision of the world impacts on his surroundings.

Jordy van den Nieuwendijk began his artistic career to impress girls. The cartoon-like creatures in his drawings on the blackboard and hastily sketched pieces of paper were considered CUTE. Moving on from cute to COOL, he opted for graffiti and stood out for drawing rather than writing. SMART.It soon became clear that Van den Nieuwendijk had no need of the anarchy of graffiti, or perhaps wasn’t suited to it at all. He wanted to become famous. Stumbling over his own name – Van den Nieuwendijk is neither fancy nor artistic – he adopted an alter ego: as SUPEROBOTURBO he developed mature cartoon-like figures that were colourfully absorbed in a world entirely their own. On the day he became an adult he gave his characters bodily extras that made his FAN CLUB grow enormously. Superoboturbo rapidly became too much for Van den Nieuwendijk to handle and as restless QUICKSILVER he decided to give him a ceremonial burial in the back yard of the art academy in The Hague. All that remained above the ground was the triple phallic cross. When it was found missing the day after, Van den Nieuwendijk knew that the Superoboturbo era was over.

An outdoor shop in Noordwijk offered him a commission, which opened the door for Van den Nieuwendijk to a new world full of colourful, open line drawings. He attained SUCCESS again – clients fell over one another, from Hema and NRC to Hermes, Le Monde and the New York Times – and he greedily set off for NEW ADVENTURES. This time he took up the challenge of the canvas and tried to find ways of riveting the viewer’s attention for longer than the average nine seconds. It was a challenge not only to himself, but also to the viewer.


VDND sprints after his work. With felt-tip pen, brush and mouse, he pursues his own ideas and jots them down hastily, once again in a race against TIME. He stretches his own capacities in the quest for limits that never appear on the horizon. He races past Matisse and Hockney, with a whiff of Philip Guston and Robert Crumb. But VDND is an artist of the NOW who finds yesterday outdated, an artist with golden hands who is LIKED in the digital world. His analog reality is BASIC: plants, hats, ribbons, houses, kitchens, vegetables, cars, motorbikes, airplanes, fire, smoke, stars, a girl from Australia, clocks. VDND’s UNIVERSE raises phenomenological questions like: Is this a capsicum? Or is this smoke? Is this permanent or ephemeral? Smoke is formless and dissolves, so how long is smoke recognisable as smoke? Smoke is bound by time. If you catch smoke in a pot, have you caught time? How long does time last? When the clock strikes, is the hour already past or is it just beginning? Is the striking of the clock future or history? Is the tense of VDND’s vibrant paintings present or past?

Stoompijpen, Jordy van den Nieuwendijk_KunsthalRotterdam_2016.jpg
Stoompijpen, 2016