My Utrecht Art Collection

Utrecht Kunst
It should come as no surprise that I have a fondness for old photos of Utrecht and contemporary art inspired by the city. Over the past few years, I’ve been creating my own little collection. I don’t have as much as I would like, but I do have a list of artists and images I hope to add some day. For now, though, I have a small gallery wall that makes me happy.

The large print on the right was one of my first pieces. I’d seen it on Pinterest first, actually, but couldn’t find any info about it at the time (one of the drawbacks of the site). Eventually, though, I found the print itself at one of the local art stores and couldn’t resist. It’s a great collection of Utrecht symbols including lovely Lepelenburg Park, the Willibrord statue, Broodje Mario, the train station, and one of Rietveld’s chairs. What’s not to love?

To the left is an old print of the Paushuiz as it originally looked before the additions. Beneath that is the first print I bought from Ellessi at one of the Christmas markets. I just fell in love with her style. That day, I’d seen the next print to the left, on the top, but hadn’t had enough money with me to get it. The next time she was in town at one of the markets, I went specifically to get it. It’s a view of one of the cafés at the Donkere Gaard, as seen from another café that I frequent from time to time. Beneath that is another old print of the Oudegracht and the old crane that used to stand by the Winkel van Sinkel. Tucked in the corner is one of my own small photos that I have a fondness for.

The small picture on the bottom left is an antique postcard of the Breyerskameren, a view I get daily, as it’s across the canal from the park where we’ve taken our dogs over the years.

And on the top far left is my first print from L-Tuziasm. He’s a local artist I’ve written about previously. I absolutely love his work and hope to purchase one of his paintings some day. Each year, though, he does a limited print of the Domtoren. This was the first one I was able to get. However, I recently added a second one, the most recent one he’s done.

I had requested my copy, but a while later he contacted me to work out a barter. He was putting together a catalogue of some of his work and wanted to include an English translation. I helped him with that in exchange for the print (and a copy of the catalogue). Awesome deal! I might need another print before I can hang it, in order to get things balanced. For now, it’s sitting happily beneath the gallery wall, with one of my own photos and a few odds and ends.
Utrecht Kunst

Salon de Paris With an L-Tuziasm Edge

L-Tuziasm AtelierThe western edge of the city has been a construction site for years. First there was the rebuilding of the music palace, and now there’s the rebuilding of the train station, the Hoog Catharijne shopping center, the ring canal, and various other new buildings. In some cases, old structures are being torn down to make way for new ones, including the row of buildings along Van Sijpesteinkade.

L-Tuziasm AtelierAt Van Sijpesteinkade 11, you will find the atelier of local artist L-Tuziasm. Sadly, with the imminent destruction of the street, L-Tuziasm is having to find a new studio. However, to have one final grand exhibit, he is inviting a variety of artists from Utrecht, Rotterdam, and Amsterdam to show their work in the final Mooie Plaatjes exhibition.

L-Tuziasm has been putting together these group exhibits since 2009, showing the work of better known artists, as well as emerging artists. The works vary in format, including painting, illustration, photography, graffiti and more. L-Tuziasm sees these group exhibits as harkening back to the salon de Paris style of the 18th and 19th centuries, but having a bit of an edge, allowing for a variety of traditional and modern art styles to come together. With so many art forms being shown side by side, in close proximity, they almost create their own new work of art in the process.

The final exhibition will be held Sunday, 30 March, from 12:00-19:00 at Van Sijpesteinkade 11. It’s a great opportunity to see some fantastic artwork from a variety of talented artists. As well as L-Tuziasm’s own work, there will be work by Annemiek Vera, Sasa Ostoja, Jan Willem Campmans, KBTR, Bram Boomgaardt, Janus van den Eijnden, Gino Hoiting, Lize Kraan, Arie Bremselaar, Tomas Sabatello, Franklin Plein, Sasja Bork, Ox Alien, and Kris van Veen. If you’re remotely close to Utrecht, it’s absolutely worth a visit.

Drawing with Light on the Rietveld-Schröder House

The Light-UP Collective is a group of artists here in Utrecht — including L-Tuziasm — who do fascinating things with light and projections. Essentially, they draw with light, using tablets, beamers, and their own in-house software fantastically named Happytron. Large or small, their projects aren’t just limited to the artists of the collective. They often have audience members get involved, as well. Nor is their work limited to Utrecht, they are involved in events all over the country.

However, it seems they did do some work here in Utrecht recently. Specifically, they took a trip to the Rietveld-Schröder House to work their light magic on the famous home. Have a look!


Artists in Utrecht: L-Tuziasm

I focus a lot on the art history side of Utrecht, especially as it relates to specific buildings. I developed a love of architecture while working on my history of art degree and a bit of rustication or a beautifully proportioned series of arches can make me a bit giddy.
L-Tuziasm Painting in the PopUp Galerie UtrechtYet Utrecht is much more than a collection of historic buildings. There are plenty of local artists working in a variety of mediums, creating new works of art to add to the city’s rich history. I figured it’s about time I began focusing on some of these artists, learning more about them and sharing their work.

First up is L-Tuziasm, AKA Lars, a visual artist who finds his enthusiasm (get it?) and inspiration in the world around him. He has a wonderful sense of colour and creates incredibly atmospheric works of urban abstraction. Multi-coloured squares and rectangles pile up upon each other forming landscapes that are urban and alive with energy. His use of colour and form — sometimes hard lines and aggressive colours, other times cool, hazy implied shapes — create an astounding array of moods and emotions.
L-Tuziasm Dawn CityPerhaps it’s the fact that he creates architecturally inspired works that is one reason why I enjoy his style so much. He turns the rigidity of architecture into something much more organic. He also plays around with the types of paint he uses and the way he gets the paint onto the canvas. All of it adds a lively, expressionistic feel to his paintings.
Utrechtse kunstenaar L-Tuziasm  maakt prent van Utrecht met oplage zo hoog als de DomtorenNow he’s turned his hand to creating a print as a tribute to his hometown, Utrecht. In this piece, he combines his trademark blocks that line up along the canal, accompanied by the iconic Domtoren. This is a limited edition print: only 112 are made. Best of all is the reasoning for that number. Just as nothing can be built in the city center taller than the Domtoren’s 112 meters, there will be no more than 112 prints made.

His paintings are typically found in galleries — and even in the Brussels airport — but this print is available directly through L-Tuziasm. You can get a framed print for just €35. Simply contact him through his Facebook page or email him. If you “like” his Facebook page and share the post about the print, you can even get €2.50 off the price. This print, and its affordability, is a thank you to his supporters.
Prent L-Tuziasm 2013 Utrecht  gracht & DomThe holiday season is coming up, so surely the print would make a fantastic gift. Not only do you get a fantastic print of Utrecht, you get to support a local Utrecht artist. Win-win!

He gets bonus cool points for a particular work of art that involved an eliphant (olifant!). In 2010 he painted an elephant sculpture for the Elephant Parade exhibition. The pieces were auctioned off at Christie’s and proceeds went to the Elephant Family, the largest elephant charity in the world.
L-Tuziasm Concrete Jungle Elephant Elephant Parade 2010So if you’re in the Utrecht area, go see some of his work on display at various exhibitions. Regardless of where you are, do check out his website and see some of his other works. Hopefully, you’ll be enthusiastic, too.

All photos courtesy of L-Tuziasm