Anne-Mie van Kerckhoven - The HeadNurse-files

It is already three years since the Belgian artist Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven (AMVK, b. 1951) expressed the wish to assemble material from her extensive HeadNurse Project ­ which she describes as a Sex and Technology project ­ in a publication that puts the whole project into perspective. This was made possible by intensive cooperation between AMVK, the NeuerAachenerKunstverein (NAK), the Kunsthalle Bern and objectif_exhibitions of Antwerp.

The publication is the result of a research project, carried out by Patrick Van Rossem for objectif_exhibitions in co-operation with Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven over the last two years. It accompanies the exhibitions How Reliable is the Brain? (NAK) and AMVK ­ EZFK (Kunsthalle Bern). The two exhibitions are dealt with separately at the end of the publication. The publication of the HeadNurse-files responds to the international interest in a body of work that is unjustly still little-known. The layers of content and interdisciplinary work and the multimedia experimentation AMVK has been carrying out since the Seventies form a major point of reference in relation to the ever more pressing enquiries regarding the specific character of a contemporary medium-specific way of thinking.

By means of installation shots, film stills and artistic images, the HeadNurse-files present an overview of the projectıs development from 1995 to 2004 and beyond. They are interspersed with articles, quotations and film scripts by AMVK, by theoretical reflections published in the course of the HeadNurse activities (Filip Luyckx, Corinne Melin, Renate Puvogel, Ronald Van De Sompel and Wim Van Mulders) and new articles (Susanne Titz, Dorothea Olkowski, Philippe Pirotte, Patrick Van Rossem).

The extensive amount of theoretical contributions gathered in the book is the result of a well-considered decision. The aim was to create a dialogical situation between different theoretical interpretations of the HeadNurse project and its visualisation in the book. The accumulation coincides with the concept of the 'file' in its archival use. The book is designed by the artist herself, conceived as an aesthetic bath from which the many theoretical contributions unfold.

The files should be seen rather as an in-depth questioning of the artistic significance of AMVK's visual idiom and the complexity of content her media experiment involves. Throughout it the authors explore drawing and painting, pictorial thinking, the digital, multimedia working method and the spatial negotiation between image and support, architecture and installation, viewer and work of art. The positioning of the artistic identity throughout AMVK's style, her fascination for the image of woman and the many references to her own self ­ in image and words ­ form an enduring outline of an artist's position. Incarnation is in this instance located between existence and artistic creation. This too is one of the main focuses of this publication.

Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven - The HeadNurse-files is published by objectif_exhibitions, Antwerpen (B), the NeuerAachenerKunstverein (D) and the Kunsthalle Bern (CH)

concept and design: Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven
editor: Patrick Van Rossem

Text contributions by: Filip Luyckx, Corinne Melin, Dorothea Olkowski, Philippe Pirotte, Renate Puvogel, Susanne Titz, Ronald Van De Sompel, Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven, Wim Van Mulders and Patrick Van Rossem

176 pages, trilingual (Dutch, German, English), full colour, hardcover edition - ISBN 9080849332

The publication was realized with the generous support of De Vlaamse Gemeenschap (The Flemish Community) and private patronage.


Launch Switzerland: Kunsthalle Bern 28th of Jan., on the occasion of the exhibition AMVK ­ EZFK (until the 26th of March, 2005)
Info.: Kunsthalle Bern, Helvetiaplatz 1, CH-3005 Bern, T ++41 (0) 31 350 00 40, F ++41 (0) 31 31 350 00 41, ,

Launch Belgium: objectif_exhibitions in co-operation with the M HKA, Antwerp, Feb. 2005 (to be announced)
Info.: Patrick Van Rossem, 0032 (0) 476 334 667, ,

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