Archive for the ‘functional objects and materials’ Category


Tools to keep your house unfinished ~ by Isabel Marcos

July 9, 2018 posted in exhibitions, functional objects and materials, projects, subsidy


Tools to keep your house unfinished ~
Window dressing #4

15.07 – 30.08.2018

INAUGURATION: Saturday 14 July at 19:00h

Tools to keep your house unfinished by the Spanish artist Isabel Marcos, is a fourth site-specific intervention in the framework of Window dressing initiated by Upominki in the Winter of 2017.

Through the disruption of continuity and where ambiguity can be experienced – alternative spaces are being created. An ambiguity that rather than bringing us to a blur, can sharpen our senses and stimulate imagination.

Isabel Marcos believes that in such transitory spaces and in in-between realities, we find places for resistance. Where the in-betweenness exists, in a present that is looking to a future, the space questions its own identity and invites us to rethink this notion, as well as to delve into the relation between human subjectivity and inhabited structures.

Upominki is a space in transition, with upcoming walls and unexisting dropped ceilings. While being renovated collectively, we try to rethink its identity, values, means and future.

Through challenging the quotidian interactions between bodies and architecture, Tools to keep your house unfinished introduces plasticity and elasticity to both: the hard and rough surfaces, and to the tools that are being used in the renovation process. In order to invite the involved people to consider dysfunctionality as an ambiguous productivity, through these gestures – both physically and metaphorically – Marcos tries to obstruct the renovation of Upominki as such.

In the course of the evening we will screen the artist Horizon and skirting board (2015) and tell more about the start of our collaboration.

Come and join us in the on-going proces and feel free to bring anyone who might be interested!



Polymath – hominem universalis #2

June 3, 2018 posted in events, functional objects and materials, labour, subsidy

image credits NIKA

Polymath – hominem universalis # 2

Sunday 3rd of June at 3PM


We are very excited to invite you to the second of many conversations/collective imaginings/speculations/gatherings/meals and workshop situations, we’ll be hosting around the notions of giving, receiving and reciprocating.

In this opportunity we will have as a guest, academic and assistant professor at the Department of Business-Society Management of Erasmus University, Dr. Samer Abdelnour.

“The discussion will try to unpack a question that social scientists have long been preoccupied with: Can actors spark institutional change when they are deeply embedded in those very institutions they seek to change? The talk will give an overview of different ways of thinking about this question, and possible ways to think about actors and institutions.

We will do our best to apply this question to our own work as well as our community and societal ambitions. Bring your thoughts, ideas and questions!”

As part of this workshop, Samer would like to share a text that addresses some of the key themes we will be discussing:

Over the course of the afternoon and alongside Samer’s presentation, readings and discussion, we´ll be looking into some excerpts of texts that may inspire our conversation.
We will revisit John Brunner’s sci-fi novel, Polymath, while we actively change and create the new physical space of Upominki.
As such, and for the purpose of this new beginning, we would like to offer a non-monetary transaction for your time and dedication in the creation of the new Upominki.

If you are interested in participating, we then ask you:
How could we reciprocate? What would you need most of a space like Upominki? How can we build a relationship that benefits both the space and your needs or desires? What can we do for you?

The gathering will start at 3PM at Upominki, feel free to propose someone who might be especially interested in these ideas.

Please confirm your participation so we can make sure to have enough food, drinks and tools for all of us.

We are really excited about these get-togethers and look forward to seeing you there!

Weronika and Natalia


Polymath – hominem universalis is a series of gatherings meant to open up a discussion on the post-work post-home and post-capitalism time. Taking as a starting point the book of John Brunner, together with the invited guests, we tend to touch upon the notion’s like: skills, being skilled, being universal versus being trained in a specific field, being a hybrid person (among others).



Polymath – hominem universalis

March 27, 2018 posted in events, functional objects and materials, labour, projects, subsidy

image credits NIKA

Dear …,

Since the beginning of 2012 Upominki has been operating in Rotterdam, and beyond, as a platform for exchanging artistic ideas.

It became a space through which life and work connect. The unofficial opening of Upominki took place on the 20th of March 2012, which was also the day of my …birthday. Maybe it’s a coincidence, maybe not. Yet, we (Natalia, you and myself) find ourselves almost at the same time of the year, six years further from Upominki’s initial thoughts on giving, receiving and reciprocating.

On appreciating and giving back.
On labor. On time.
On investment, knowledge and sharing.
On sharing knowledge, especially that of the artist, the mother, the friend, the lover, the neighbor
On care. On acknowledging the other, and oneself reflected in her/him/it/they.
On acknowledging the presence and consistency of those who decide to stick around, no matter the material return, the profit or advantage it may reward.

“A polymath is a man or woman adapted and trained for years, right up to the age of forty, to take on one job on one particular planet. Not a superman, not a kind of walking computer, just a person with a special kind of dedication who’s been worked on by a vast team of experts, chemically, surgically, intellectually… I couldn’t tell you this, because you’d expect me to perform miracles. First you had to get acquainted with me as a person, didn’t you? Otherwise you’d have regarded me as a machine.” Pg. 70

Today we are very excited to invite you to the first of many conversations/collective imaginings/speculations/gatherings/meals and workshop situations, we’ll be hosting around the above notions and questions, but also many more that may derive from our collective thinking.

Together with you we would like to establish a group of informal board of trustees, friends and colleagues, who are open to think, discuss and implement a communal idea of how to work together?

 “Point taken, Lex. I guess all of us want to go on seeing things run by popular consent, too, not by one man the way they are up on the plateau.” Pg102 

 Would you like to accept this invitation?

Over the course of the early afternoon on Sunday 25th of March 2018, accompanied by food and warmth, we´ll be looking into some excerpts of texts that may inspire our conversation. During the reading/discussion Marc will develop a restoration workshop, where we will be invited to propose solutions, restore, fix or give new functions to objects that no longer serve their original purpose.

Therefore, please bring an object with you that needs restoration, has to be fixed and/or re-adapted but you never had enough time to do so.

The gathering will start at 12PM at Upominki, feel free to propose someone who might be especially interested in the idea.

Please confirm your participation so we can make sure to have enough food, drinks and tools for all of us.

We are really excited about these get-togethers and look forward to seeing you there!

Weronika and Natalia


Polymath – hominem universalis is a series of gatherings meant to open up a discussion on the post-work post-home and post-capitalism time. Taking as a starting point the book of John Brunner, together with the invited guests, we tend to touch upon the notion’s like: skills, being skilled, being universal versus being trained in a specific field, being a hybrid person (among others).

Quotes: Polymath John Brunner DAW BOOKS, INC. DONALD A. WOLLHEIM, PUBLISHER 1301 Avenue of the Americas New York, N. Y. 10019

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Window dressing #2

September 20, 2017 posted in events, functional objects and materials, labour, projects
Sandim Mendes Untitled, 2016
Courtesy of the Artist

Window dressing #2 by Sandim Mendes
24 September – 30 November 2017

INAUGURATION: Saturday, 23 September 2017 at 19:00h

Sandim Mendes (NL, 1986) is a mixed media artist with a strong focus on photography and textile design. Throughout her projects Sandim researches the concept of identity in and between the various cultures. While looking back at and exploring the classic fine arts techniques, the artist’ manual labor involved in the production process, often becomes part of her work.

Window dressing is an ongoing project that, since the beginning of this year, gradually unfolds in the frontal window of Upominki. The project takes the form of smooth gestures that come and go, while being carried out by various invited artists. As the months go by, Upominki’s window becomes an on-site dialogue where the individual and the collective identity meet.

Window dressing is made possible with the joint effort of beloved family and friends.


Christmas Blessings and off to the New Year

December 29, 2016 posted in functional objects and materials, projects

etalage winter

#0.1 in collaboration with Marie-Sarah Simon

Dear collegues and friends of Upominki,

In many Polish homes an empty place is being set at the Christmas table in case a person down on luck should show up and ask for shelter. And while this rarely happens nowadays, the tradition nevertheless requires that lone strangers be taken in and treated as family…

Through this concise message I would like to extend warm Christmas Blessings to all of you who sympathize and follow my work.

There are so many things to say and so little words. Therefore my strong wish is to just leave 2016 and look forward to another year ahead!
Moreover, let’s stay together and work things out, for better days!

To wrap up with something to look up to…

What you can see on the image above is a temporary installation in the new space of Upominki on Sint-Mariastraat 132B in Rotterdam. It was made in collaboration with a great friend and artist Marie-Sarah Simon especially for this winter season. The installation (let’s just give it a name – #0.1) begins a new project that will be unfolding in the upcoming months, more information about it will follow soon.

With best wishes full of love and hope for the New Year to come.

Weronika Zielinska-Klein

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Małgosia Goliszewska: I’ll call you when I get there / documentation

September 18, 2013 posted in documentation, exhibitions, functional objects and materials, projects, residency

3 chanel video installation: Grandma 00:02:06, Mom 00:13:07, Policeman 00:08:28

2 passport scans. Copy of the original police note, written in Polish. Travel ticket.

Video Curator 00:03:21

Video Landlord 00:07:16

I’ll call you when I get there is a joint project of two artists Weronika Zielinska, a Polish artist based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, and Małgosia Goliszewska, based in Szczecin, Poland. Through a close collaboration between them, the project takes a form of looking at the other, research that deals with clichés and problematics of the complex relationships between two women-artists that work together within cultural field, while being observed from the perspective of an external viewer.

I’ll call you when I get there plays with an idea of a narrative, that in bits and pieces tells a story about two artistic practices each struggling with different, yet similar, obstacles. Whether it is an overprotective mother, or a wordy businessman, a decent curator or an accidental passer-by, the puzzles start to fit together once the viewer is left free to wonder around in a space. In between moving images that may seem fictitious, he/she finally also discovers some artifacts like scans of two women passports, a train ticket, and a police note with an original stamp.


For this exhibition Małgosia purchased different video and audio cables, as well as three sets of headphones, which then she donated to Upominki as a thank you gift.




Vova Vorotniov: Watching in my schoes / documentation

July 29, 2013 posted in documentation, exhibitions, functional objects and materials, residency


As a thank you gift for Upominki Vova donated self designed t-shirts which can be now purchased through our gift shop



Take a breath… The best must come / exhibition documentation

February 28, 2013 posted in documentation, functional objects and materials, projects

Marijke Appelman Closing the Gap, video and sound installation, 2012.

Installation view

Marijke Appelman, Because it is about Time, framed fabric and baklava, 2012.

Based on the time spent in (and between) Istanbul, Turkey and Amsterdam, The Netherlands these two works reflect on the continuum flux of time, space and patterns. Here Appelman works with materials found in both places whereas through the presented video – material from the time spend in the airplane – she formes a certian distorted reflection in the end. Yet reduced, mirrored and combined into an installation, Closing the Gap and Because it is about Time are showing not only a curve in time, as a continuum, but also speak of fading in patterns and blurring the structure of our cultures.

Domenico Billari The best must come, toothpick with a laser engraved text.

Within the framework of this exhibition on the 6th of February 2013, a performance by Domenico Billari took place during the opening of the Rotterdam Art Fair.

For “Take a breath… The best must come” (also the title of Billari’s performance) ten actors were asked to wear a perfume he produced, and walk casually among the art fair public. With this act he aimed to bring a new dimension to the venue, such as, spreading a rumour and putting the focus on ordinary visitors.

Billari’s concept involves both the originated and the familiar tone. The peculiar ingredients of the fragrance, Bergamotto and Ginestra, both come from Calabria, Italy. Through this gesture – interfering a closed system of an art fair – his intention became a happening that is outside of its regular place, the exhibition space of Upominki.

With special thanks to: Anna, Cristina, Eric, Guiseppe, Malou, Marie-Sarah, Martijn, Mirjam, Jesse, Paco, Weronika and Wilfried Lentz.

H.K. Rannversson BOOKS TO BE LOOKED AT, ART TO BE READ / Installation view

H.K. Rannversson BOOKS TO BE LOOKED AT, ART TO BE READ / Installation details

BOOKS TO BE LOOKED AT, ART TO BE READ a project by H.K. Rannversson examines the contradictions of exhibiting books as works of art, through a display of multiple copies of the artist’s book CIRCLES by Kristján Guðmundsson (b. 1941, Iceland). The book, considered a work of art, was published in conjunction with the artist’s exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum in late 1973 in an edition of 500 copies. However, the book is also considered a museum catalogue, listed number 550 in the directory of the museum. Thus, CIRCLES is perceived as one of the earliest Dutch examples of a catalogue that also serves as an autonomous work of art.

BOOKS TO BE LOOKED AT, ART TO BE READ raises questions about the publication, dissemination and (re)presentation of books within the artworld, whereby pointing towards the function of the book as a medium for artistic practice. The project displays copies of CIRCLES from H.K. Rannversson’s own collection, which he has collected in recent years, as well as from private collectors.

In reciprocity act all three artists decided to leave materials they use to install, or to produce, their work for this exhibition. In addition Upominki received: two wooden plates aprox. 2x2m, a DVD/ Beamer cabel, a stamp with Upomiki web address, and a box full of A0 white foam plates.




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The Force Of Freedom: TELEWAR / documention

January 10, 2013 posted in documentation, functional objects and materials, projects

Telewar, 2012 edition of 25

The publication, next to the spatial presentation, is a collection of thoughts, found footage, Internet published articles, and different privite materials gathered in the web that, speak about “drone technologies and contemporary conflict, which manifests itself as much on the ground as it does in the media” (Telewar, introduction). The zine was put together within the three weeks of The Force of Freedeom working period. The artists do not consider it as a definite outcome from out of their research, but more as a step towards further investigation, which is meant to start a dialogue and create a certain awareness. The publication is still available to purchase for €10. Please contact us if you are interested.

After the project was realized 10 publications will donated to Upominki.

To read more about the project, go to Telewar

(all pictures courtesy of the artists)





HARD-CORE: Ultimate Harmony / documentation

November 26, 2012 posted in documentation, functional objects and materials, money, projects
“Who does not know this feeling, when entering an exhibition, want to swap things around and reposition the works? Well, this is your chance! We would like to invite you for a hands-on co-re-curation of the exhibition ‘Ultimate Harmony’ at Upominki. Come and decide with fellow viewers what is the most optimal assemblage of this exhibition!

For ‘Ultimate Harmony’ Upominki was asked by the HARD-CORE group to organize an x amount of enthusiastic people who would wish to re-co-curate their project.  However instead, we chose to put the invitation on Facebook, and make it into an open call. Within a few days, posted as a public event the open call started by Upominki, gathered more than 15 people interested in the idea, yet first eight who reacted have been invited to participate at the end. (Text above is the original open call posted on the social media website.)

On the 9th of November the first group of co-re-curators started assembling the exhibition. Their task was to place the works in their most suitable positions. However because no work was physically presented to this group, instead each artist made an introduction on his/her piece i.e. the content of the work and some practical information (rough dimensions and the amount of equipment). Yet no visual material explaining the work or equipment being used was present during the artists’ presentations.

The second group of co-re-curators, invited on the 12th of November, was introduced to the project while the space was already filled with works according to the instructions given by the previous group. Surprisingly the focus of this team was mainly the conceptual part of the works, and how this could be highlighted in a group exhibition like this one. Such an approach resulted in the necessity of finding the most formal way of presenting each of the work.

On the 13th of November the last group came to co-re-curate ‘Ultimate Harmony’. While dealing with the two statements made already by their proclaimers, they managed to re-think the positioning of the works again, and found a way to communicate the entire exhibition with the audience. This group was asked by HARD-CORE to write a curatorial statement at the end.

The pictures below show the documentation of the very last set up. They are the result of curatorial decisions made by the last group yet with the consideration of all previous ideas.

Co-re-curators: Bas van Liempd, Dico Kruijsse, Georgie Harris, Jessica Tankard, Just Quist, Renée Staal, Roos Wijma, Rosa Sijben

‘Ultimate Harmony’ exhibition in three stages:

Eloise Bonneviot The infernal design 

Anne de Boer Icosahedron ico 1; Icosahedron ico 2; Icosahedron ico 3;

Hrafnhildur Helgadóttir An attempt to compose a self-aware art object

exhibition view

Daniel Dressel Untitled (detail)

exhibition view (on the right  Ada Avetist 6a: C.C. XIV 6b: C.C. XIII)


Our great exchange has been also expressed in money and objects both contributed by HARD-CORE. Upominki received €120 in cash, and some kitchen equipment also we earned €150 during our opening.