How do you show temporary, site-specific art years later in a RETROSPECTIVE?
Harmen de Hoop re-created works in Rotterdam that were made anonymously and without permission in other cities.
The question is: in what way does a new location and a different context change the meaning of the work?
RETROSPECTIVE (LADIES & GENTS) – ROTTERDAM – 2017
LADIES & GENTS #1 – BERLIN – 1993
Executed 24 years later and in another city. What are the significant shifts in meaning? In Berlin, the work hinted at the post-war guilt about the division of people into groups. And it raised the question of how law-abiding the ‘Ossies’ and ‘Wessies’ were in 1993. Re-created in 2017 in Rotterdam-South, one might think it has to do with an Islamic division of men and women. Or is it symbolic that this time the women are mentioned first, and not the men? Is feminism doing well in our globalized world? Perhaps we should also take the discussion about gender-neutral toilets into consideration. Are these gender-neutral benches in public space a positive thing or will the sexual harassment of women decline if we install more gender-specific benches?