Karel Martens: Motion

  • from Thu 29.06.2017
  • until Sun 30.07.2017
Karel Martens


Karel Martens has ten hands for every finger. He’s an artist, a typographer, a graphic designer, a bookmaker, and an educator. He co-founded a school. He’s influenced thousands. ‘Motion’ will afford a compound view on an expansive practice, and chart a road map. Yet while all of that spans over 50 years of Martens’ inter-disciplinary activity, the exhibition will remain grounded firmly in the present (and future).

The exhibition will include some representative works – mono-prints of and on found materials, paper reliefs, videos, modular wallpapers, kinetic sculptures and very early optical work. Consider all of that a contextual substrate that corroborates Martens’ responsive and systematic approach to colour, format, type and material.

His immense influence as an educator will be centrally positioned within the exhibition, with a selection of publications by his former students displayed on tables Martens designed for the Werkplaats Typografie in Arnhem, NL (the school he co-founded in 1998).

The primary focus will be on Martens’ most recent work, with several new commissions – wallpaper made up of multicolored icons, interactive video projections and a massive abstract clock. These works were produced for the exhibition, while existing works are being specially reconfigured. It will be immersive – with colour inversions over entire spaces, multiplied by real-time mirroring and attuned with technique, systematic seriality, conceptual operations and a multi-functional zone. 

‘Motion’ is not intended to display Martens’ practice, but instead as an embodied demonstration of his method.

This expo is part of 019’s Museum of Moving Practice

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