Over the spring and summer months Paulien Oltheten made repeated visits on foot and bicycle to Maasvlakte by ferry from Hook of Holland. Through chance encounter, intuitive and a sensitivity for the implicit, she has witnessed and sometimes intervened in the interaction of fishermen, ship enthusiasts, dog walkers and site workers with their environment. On 14 August 2009 a billboard with an image produced during her visits was placed along the A15 on the Maasvlakte, nearby that of Hans Schabus. Oltheten made use of the lack of reference of natural elements, such as trees, bushes and people by arranging meetings. These stagings mostly took place in locations on the Maasvlakte that will soon disappear or be displaced and often involved variations of the theme one becomes two, referring to the Maasvlakte, of which there will later be two. This resulted in a series of photographs and two video pieces, which were seen during October in and around the visitor centre Futureland.
'Portscapes' was an accumulative series of ten art projects produced and presented throughout 2009 alongside the construction of Rotterdam's Maasvlakte 2 an extension to Europe's largest seaport and industrial area which will be realised between 2008 and 2013. 'Portscapes' was commissioned by the Port of Rotterdam Authority with advice and financial support from SKOR (Foundation for Art and Public Space, Amsterdam) and was curated by Latitudes.
Artists: Lara Almarcegui, Bik van der Pol, Jan Dibbets, Marjolijn Dijkman, Fucking Good Art, Ilana Halperin, Christina Hemauer & Roman Keller, Paulien Oltheten, Jorge Satorre, Hans Schabus. Website collaborators: Maria Barnas (poetry) and Markus Miessen (interviews).
An exhibition presenting the projects is on view at the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, 30 January 25 April 2010.
Project website: www.portscapes.nl