"Intimacy op de Schans" is an unconventional series of four exhibitions of photography-based work, presented in a creative youth home in Amsterdam, that reflect on themes of intimacy, vulnerability and gender identity in North American (visual) culture.
The exhibition series Intimacy op de Schans, covering four weekends in October, was developed by curator Zippora Elders following the rise of President Trump, when Dutch media showed an America where vulnerability, intimacy and the “other” are seen as problematic. Participating artists Aura Rosenberg, Hannah Perry, Cynthia Talmadge and Sam Contis depict the fragility of Americans, the beauty of the nation’s nature and landscapes, the sensuality of American bodies,
and the fluidity of the identities populating the land. With knowledge of the history of the country, and its visual culture in particular, these artists create alternative but still very "American" realities.
Influential youth home
The location, too, is an alternative. A place that is not institutional, commercial, or white cube, but a home for many young people from all corners of Amsterdam: the “Oudeschans”—the house of Amsterdam's creative it-boy Bonne Reijn and his friends. The photography-based work appeals to the inhabitants and visitors of the well-known Amsterdam youth home, where the influence of American (visual) culture in creative expressions like music and visual arts is strongly apparent. Pop culture is also important: the influence of blockbuster movies, TV series, comic books, tattoo culture, etc., is very present as well. The boys living there form a diverse group of young musicians, artists, photographers and cultural historians, such as the hip-hop group SMIB, drummer Raven Aartsen of Moses and the Firstborn, illustrator and painter Floor van het Nederend, and photographer Abel Minnée.