Galerie Fons Welters - Amsterdam

IN SITU: Tenant of Culture

Under the moniker of Tenant of Culture, Hendrickje Schimmel works with fashion as a trained fashion and textile practitioner, but does so from the perspective of the field of contemporary art. The artist makes objects and installations employing used, leftover or deadstock garments as her main source material. Plastic handbags, technical sportswear and leather shoes are carefully extracted from the frenetic circuit of fast fashion to become amplified versions of themselves. Her sculptural works also involve materials found in home decoration or construction, such as tiles, cement and plaster. Together, they mingle, regenerate and merge in unexpected constellations of beauty and monstrosity. By means of collage, analysis and (de)construction, Tenant of Culture seeks to set the terms of an inclusive understanding of cultural production, in which labour and craft, bodies and warehouses, waste and resources, affect and industry, planned obsolescence and sustainability, agency and dependency, exist in visible proximity.

For her IN SITU presentation, Tenant of Culture has created a new installation suspended and isolated in the space. The work consists of a 22m long steel structure serving as a display support for a wide range of sculptural objects. Each item possesses a unique identity and is testament to ultra-precise and devotional craft, contrasting with the stark and flexible functionality of what resembles an industrial conveyor system as used in storage warehouses, distribution centres and dark stores. This exhibition seeks to articulate an ambitious step in the development of Tenant of Culture’s practice, in which the global movements of the fashion industry, from opacity to visibility, become conceptual and speculative tools for the work.

A series of garment transforming workshops led by the artist, along with a public programme, will be held alongside the exhibition.