Marcel van Eeden


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Year 2020
Medium Nero pencil, coloured pencil, and watercolour on laid paper
Dimensions 20.8 x 29.7 cm

About the work

The drawing is made after an old photo of the ‘Limmat’ river with the ‘Rathaus’ in Zurich, combined with a title from a book about drawing. Both date from before my birth, as always in my work.

About the artist:

Born 1965 Den Haag, Marcel van Eeden lives and works in Zurich and Den Haag. Graduated from Koninklijke Academie van Beeldende Kunsten, The Hague (1993).

In undertaking a project to represent the people, objects and events solely prior to the day of his birth, van Eeden creates visual narratives that draw from disparate sources both visual and written. His oeuvre is divided into three main bodies of work: individual drawings, his various “narrative” series, which includes a cast of fictional characters, and the Category or Cat. series. Working primarily in monochrome on paper on a modest scale or, more recently, on a larger scale, he undertakes the endless and absurdly self-generating task of a desire to draw everything prior to his existence. Through the creation of semi-fictional protagonists and events, and by using material that pre-dates his own life, he questions the authenticity of autobiography and our broader experience of history and its documents.

His work is held public and private collections including Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; De Neederlandsche Bank, Amsterdam; Sammlung Goetz, Munich; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; and Walker Art Center, Minneapolis.

Selected solo exhibitions include The Karlsruhe Sketchbook, Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe (2019); Marcel van Eeden. Den Haag – Zurich 1934 – 1936, Barbara Seiler, Zurich (2019); Ryks Museum, Galerie Martin van Zomeren, Amsterdam (2019); Ce qui pese et ce qui nourrit, Musée Rolin, Autun (2018); Circus Henny, Stedelijk Museum, Schiedam (2018); High Mountains, a Rainbow, the Moon and Stars, Galerie Barbara Seiler, Zürich (2018); Marcel van Eeden, CAC Malaga (2017); On Drawing, Onomatopee, Endhoven (2017); Machine/Machinery, InSitu – Fabienne Leclerc, Paris (2016); and The Symmetry Argument, Sprüth Magers, Berlin (2015). Selected group exhibitions include A Small Investigation, 32 East Broadway, New York (2019); The Expressionist Figure: 100 Years of Modern and Contemporary Drawing, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2019); Hand Drawn, Action Packed, Hayward Gallery touring exhibition, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea (2019); A Passion for Drawing. Collection Guerlain at the Albertina, Albertina, Vienna (2019); Autofiktionen, Zeichnung der Gegenwart, Wilhelm Hack Museum, Ludwigshafen (2019); De Line Up, Centraal Museum, Utrecht (2018); Everything happens at once, Galerie Zink, Brussels (2018); A Thousand Roaring Beasts: Display Devices for a Critical Modernity, Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporaneo, Sevilla (2018); Von Pablo Picasso bis Robert Rauschenberg, Schenkung Céline, Heiner und Aeneas Bastian Hommage à Ingrid Mössinger, Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz (2017); I who make mistakes on the eternal typewriter, curated by Marcel van Eeden, Drawing Centre Diepenheim (2017); and Manifesta 11 – The Historical Exhibition: Sites Under Construction, Zurich (2016).

Awards include Ouborg Award (2013); Prix de Dessin de la Fondation d’Art Contemporain Daniël et Florence Guerlain (2011).

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