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Bonnefantenmuseum announces Martin Visser, collector, designer, free spirit

The Bonnefantenmuseum presents Martin Visser, collector, designer, free spirit, an exhibition on view 13 March–17 June 2012.

The exhibition Martin Visser, collector, designer, free spirit focuses on the legacy of Martin Visser (1922 Papendrecht–Bergeijk 2009), renowned furniture designer and driving force behind the Visser collection. It is the first time a coherent picture has been sketched of Visser’s extraordinary significance for visual art, design and architecture in the Netherlands.

The Visser collection comprises the most important private collection of neo-avant-garde art in the Netherlands. Visser’s furniture designs, including his iconic sofa bed BR 02 (1958), are regarded as classics of Dutch design, and his unique house in Bergeijk, designed by Gerrit Rietveld with extensions by Aldo van Eyck, has recently been declared a listed building.

The exhibition starts with a number of Visser’s classic furniture designs. Martin Visser designed a number of excellent pieces of furniture that are already regarded as classics of Dutch design, and for which he received several œuvre awards. It goes on to give an impression of his unique house in Bergeijk, through an architectural model and recent interior photos taken by Johannes Schwartz. The rest of the exhibition is devoted to over a hundred paintings, sculptures, installations, photographic works and drawings from the private Visser collection. These works cover three periods in the history of neo-avant-garde art ranging from artists from the late forties to the early sixties (Piero Manzoni, Lucio Fontana, Martial Raysse), the American minimal art from the fifties and sixties (Carl Andre, Sol LeWitt, Dan Flavin) and the post modernism from the mid-seventies and eighties (Anselm Kiefer, Sigmar Polke, Keith Haring).

The show is also a perfect opportunity to display works from the Bonnefanten collection in relation to the Martin Visser exhibition. Works from Joseph Beuys, Marcel Broodthaers, Sol LeWitt, Gilbert & George and Jan Dibbets will be also on show on the second floor of the museum and complement the Visser exhibition in a very inspiring way.

Collaboration with the Kröller-Müller Museum
The exhibition is organized in close collaboration with the Kröller-Müller Museum. Over the past years, more than 400 works from the Visser collection have been acquired by the Kröller-Müller Museum in Otterlo, under the name ‘former Visser collection’.

Over a hundred art works are on loan to Maastricht, making it the museum’s biggest loan operation ever.

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