David Veldhoen is a sculptor, an architectural designer and an activist. After his studies at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, he experimented with film. Pompeii Now unfolds the making of his contemporary Pompeian collection in a road trip, was directed by Otakar Votocek and featured on Dutch national TV. Forever frozen in time, the petrified images of sudden annihilation in Pompeii parallel(ed) the threat of a nuclear strike and the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD still reflects our dependence on nature.
Veldhoen experienced the contrast of living in the bustling metropolis New York and the more traditional, natural way of life in Samoa, Polynesia. This deepened his awareness of the self-correcting powers of nature opposed to the fragility of human life. We are all, so to speak, ‘dancing on the volcano’. After a series of sculptures that evolve around this precarious human condition, the concept of petrification returned in the 900 ‘frozen images’ in his artificial island Tertulia and other architectural proposals; materialized ideas - written in stone.
Mixing the rhythms of different disciplines and scales, Veldhoen frames nature in a human context and confronts us with our position, addressing our ecological as well as our social impact.
28 March 1957, Amsterdam
Gerrit Rietveld Academy: painting and sculpture
Visual artist and designer since 1979
Lives and works in Amsterdam
a selection of projects:
1979 - 1981 Starts Art Gallery AMOK with Peter Giele; exhibition of sculptures at Gallery Sothmann
1981 - 1984 Paintings and sculptures; docu-drama ‘Pompeii Now’; movie for Dutch TV (Italy, VPRO), government grant/ visiting Western Samoa and New York; design for a Bijlmermeer Drive Inn theatre, commission Praktijkbureau Visual Arts; sculpture ‘Mankind’, purchased by the Municipial museum of Arnhem; sculptures exposed at Aorta, Amsterdam
1985 - 1991 Music projects Eidophone, Windharp for the Holland Festival, IJsbreker, Amsterdam and the Municipial museum of Arnhem; ‘Orion’, utopian design for a floating island. Sculptures purchased by ABNAMRO collection and others; painting 'Schutterstuk’ purchased by the Amsterdam Museum
1991 - 1993 Proposal for the (polluted) Griftpark, OVT Municipal Museum of Utrecht; design for an open air theatre close to the Dom-tower, Municipial School for Music, Utrecht
1997 - 2000 'Tertulia’, site specific art for Kattenbroek; ‘Rare Citizens’, site specific art for the city council of Pijnacker; guest teaching for the Sydney College of the Arts, Australia; adviser site specific arts, council of Hoorn; design for the ‘Hygiëaplein’, a square in Amsterdam, exposed in the Stedelijk Museum of Amsterdam
2001 - 2005 Advisor for the Amsterdam Fund of the Arts (AFK), IJ-oevers (harbour area) and adviser for the council (stadsdeel) of Amsterdam North. 'Vortex', sculpture for the Province House of Drenthe
2006 - 2011 ‘Wishful Thinking’ a floating sculture; ‘A Venue’, a temporary site specific project for a fly-over, close to the Coentunnel, Amsterdam; solo-exhibition Sue Biederberg Gallery; ‘Weight of Thoughts’ sculpture; 'Origin’, a proposal for the visitors centre at Oostvaarders Plassen, Flevopolder
2012 - 2017 'Melarium' (honey house); Green capital; think-model for the Zuidas; guest-teacher Gerrit Rietveld Academy architectural design; Jagtlust, design for the castle-garden of Jan Six; ‘Pangean Pulses', design for a bean garden, castle of Chaumont, France; ‘Table plan’, a social sculpture, idea-contest for ‘Who Cares’ ; sabbatical (2017)
2018 - 'Coral Brain’, light object; Lecture for Academy of Architecture, Amsterdam (Oct 5th) on Proportions; 'I Amsterdam’, visual comment on tourism in Amsterdam, Since 2017 Veldhoen works on a transdisciplinary project that blends art, architecture and science and is set in a (post)European context, proposing alterative proportions between man and nature, specifically the sea.