Tentoonstellingen Archive - Cobra Museum voor Moderne Kunst

Humanities End as a New Beginning

zaterdag 19 mrt 2022 t/m zondag 19 jun 2022


From 20 March, the Cobra Museum will present the exhibition Humanity’s End as a New Beginning in collaboration with the Amstelveen publishing house Leporello. Thirty watercolours by Japanese-American artist Yuriko Fujita Yamaguchi, painted to accompany an extraordinary collection of myths from all over the world, are on display in the Voordrachtszaal. These old stories, compiled by professor emeritus Mineke Schipper from Amstelveen, each give their vision of what the end of the world might look like, but also of how this could lead to a new beginning.

Yuriko Fujita Yamaguchi, Oceania Punishment Rescue, 201

The end and a new beginning
The end of humanity has fascinated storytellers for thousands of years. Myths show us how people from different places and different times imagined how the world would come to an end. In her paintings, Yuriko Yamaguchi depicts the well-known story of the Deluge, but she also shows how, in a Hindu tale, a fire sets the whole earth ablaze, or how, in a Chinese Han myth, the sky collapses in a catastrophic event. Some stories remind us that humankind has been wiped out before and how life started all over again. In a Japanese myth, the gods actually manage to prevent our End.

Several works in the exhibition are inspired by the dreadful future that awaits us if we do not radically change our behaviour. In light of the alarming levels of pollution and global warming, but also with the current Covid pandemic in mind, Yuriko Yamaguchi’s works have an urgent message: save our fragile and unique planet. It is high time for a new beginning. Now.

Special collaboration
Visual artist Yuriko Yamaguchi and writer and professor emeritus of intercultural literature Mineke Schipper met in Italy at a residency for researchers and artists. There, they decided to join forces. The myths about the end of the world that Schipper collected inspired Yamaguchi to make thirty watercolours. Publisher Leporello has brought their work together in the book Humanity’s End as a New Beginning.

Yuriko Yamaguchi (Japan, 1948) is a painter and sculptor. Her work is exhibited in various museums and galleries in the US, Japan and Europe. She has also been commissioned to make works for public spaces, for example at Washington Dulles Airport.

Dr Mineke Schipper has published academic works, literary essays and novels. A few much-translated titles are Never Marry a Woman with Big Feet, Hills of Paradise, and Naked or Covered.

The special collaboration between Yamaguchi and Schipper already led to an exhibition in Japan in 2018. The work was also shown in the US and in the Dutch city of Leiden.

Cobra and North Africa

zaterdag 12 mrt 2022 t/m zondag 20 nov 2022


Several artists of the Cobra movement sought inspiration for their work and philosophy in art from outside Europe, including from North Africa. The exhibition ‘Cobra and North Africa’ shows work from the museum collection by the artists who, through travel or in other ways, came into contact with the art, culture and people of North African countries such as Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.

After the Second World War, the Dutch, Danish and Belgian artists of the Cobra movement first came into contact with non-European art in museums. The Rijksmuseum exhibited ethnographic collections, for example, and Pablo Picasso’s paintings, based on his collection of African masks, found their way into museums of modern art. These images and paintings had a strong influence on some of the Cobra artists. Several of them felt the urge to see more of the world. Sometimes out of a sincere, deeper interest in other parts of the world, and sometimes with completely unrealistic expectations, artists such as Asger Jorn, Corneille and Anton Rooskens travelled to parts of North Africa. Asger Jorn, among others, even decided to live there for a longer period of time.

The artists used their travel impressions for their paintings, sculptures and written works. While one tried to capture the impressions of the landscape on canvas, being in an environment and culture different from those of Western Europe helped the other to refine his ideas and philosophy on art.

Anton Rooskens, Afrika Symbolen, 1958, C/o Pictoright Amsterdam

Presentation Cobra Art Prize 2021

vrijdag 3 dec 2021 t/m zondag 6 mrt 2022


This winter, the Cobra Museum of Modern Art is presenting work by Guido van der Werve, winner of the Cobra Art Prize 2021. The jury of the Cobra Art Prize Amstelveen 2021, consisting of Sjarel Ex, Roos Gortzak and Melchior Jaspers, unanimously decided to honour this visual artist. Van der Werve receives a monetary award of €15,000 and has been invited to present a selection of existing work in the Cobra Museum. This presentation is on show in the Cobra Museum from 4 December 2021 to 3 March 2022.

Guido van der Werve, Nummer zes, Steinway grand piano, wake me up to go to sleep and all the color of the rainbow. 17’09”, 35mm, Amsterdam NL, 2006
Guido van der Werve, Number six, Steinway grand piano, wake me up to go to sleep and all the color of the rainbow.
17’09”, 35mm, Amsterdam NL, 2006

Experiment, interdisciplinarity and radicalism are central to the works of Guido van der Werve. These are core values that he shares with the artists of the Cobra movement. In his work, Van der Werve always deliberately sought exhaustion, testing the limits of his perseverance and endurance. In 2016, he was seriously injured in a traffic accident. At 39, he had to rediscover himself: an exhausting process that required all his strength to get back on his feet. Van der Werve is currently making new work about this process. The jury feels that Guido van der Werve more than deserves the Cobra Art Prize 2021 for a mid-career artist.

Jury Cobra Art Prize 2021
“His works are utterly fascinating, alienating and often evoke an uncanny feeling. Many of his films are spectacular, grand and compelling as well as sensitive and tender. Van der Werve combines and connects music, the human body, history, performance, aesthetics, absurdity and cinematography in a way that is entirely his own. The fact that Van der Werve manages to bring all these facets together makes him a great and important artist.”

About the artist
Guido van der Werve (1977) studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Rijksakademie. Trained as a classical pianist, Van der Werve has been composing music since 2007, which he also uses for his video works. He started out as a performance artist, but soon switched to documenting his performances. Van der Werve became interested in film and cinematography because he experienced a similar emotional immediacy as he did in music. He has received several awards and his work is exhibited both in the Netherlands and abroad. In early 2022, a major exhibition about Van der Werve will open in Eye Filmmuseum Amsterdam.

About the jury
Sjarel Ex (1957) is an art historian and director of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Roos Gortzak (1973) is an art historian, curator, critic and director of the Vleeshal in Middelburg. Melchior Jaspers (1987) is an exhibition curator and art advisor to the Dutch State Architect. The awarding of the Cobra Art Prize was based on nominations by the jury members.

Guido van de Werve, Nummer drie, take step fall,10’38”, 35mm, Amsterdam NL, 2004
Guido van de Werve, Number three, take step fall,10’38”, 35mm, Amsterdam NL, 2004

About the prize
The Cobra Art Prize Amstelveen, which was introduced in 2005, is awarded periodically to a mid-career visual artist whose work engages with the spirit of the Cobra movement. Experiment, interdisciplinarity and radicality are at the heart of the legacy of this movement. The award consists of a monetary award of €15,000 and an exhibition in the Cobra Museum of Modern Art. With the Cobra Art Prize Amstelveen, the Cobra Museum of Modern Art, together with the City of Amstelveen, highlights the values of the Cobra movement and its role in contemporary art. Previous winners were Joost Conijn (2005), Johannes Schwartz (2007), Gijs Frieling (2009), Nathaniel Mellors (2011), Metahaven (2013), Jennifer Tee (2015) and Christian Friedrich (2017). The Cobra Art Prize Amstelveen is generously supported by the City of Amstelveen.

Korda: Cuba, Che, Glamour

vrijdag 18 mrt 2022 t/m zondag 26 jun 2022


The Cobra Museum of Modern Art is pleased to present the first major retrospective exhibition that celebrates the masterful work of the renowned Cuban photographer Alberto Díaz Gutiérrez, commonly known as Korda. His iconic portrait of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara is world famous. However, the exhibition shows that Korda was much more than the photographer of that one photo and the revolution. Korda: Cuba, Che, Glamour shows a selection of his very best works; from glamor and feminine beauty to advertising photography, to powerful portraits of the leaders and military of the Cuban revolution to the Cuban people and underwater wildlife images. The exhibition is made possible with the courtesy of Terra Esplêndida and The Estate of Alberto Korda, which is run by his daughter Diana Diaz, and is curated by Cuban art critic and curator Cristina Vives.

Korda, La Niña de la muñeca de palo_Sumidero, Pinar del Rio, February 1959 ©Korda Estate

Alberto Diaz Gutiérrez: Korda
Alberto Diaz Gutiérrez, known by the name Korda (Cuba, 1928 – France, 2001) is the author of Che Guevara’s most iconic portrait, dubbed “Heroic Guerrilla”, dated March 5, 1960, considered to be the most reproduced still in the history of photography, as well as one of the most representative images of the 20th century. Korda was also one of the photographers of the Cuban Revolution (1959) and documented a graphic diary with the epic iconography that marked the first years of the period. His work composes an important historical documentation, basilar to the understanding of the revolutionary spirit and character of those involved.

Authentic studio photography
Less known is the fact that Korda was initially a fashion and advertising photographer, founder in 1954 of one of the first studios dedicated to the media in Cuba. From the beginning, Korda always had a very distinctive approach to photography, working exclusively with natural light and being precise about framing and composition, envisioning his photos to be authentic stories about female beauty. Korda used this same approach when photographing the revolution. He knew how to take advantage of the sex appeal and beauty of revolutionary people in the Caribbean Island.

As the curator, Cristina Vives, says: “Korda: Cuba, Che, Glamour showcases an extremely versatile artist, not simply the illustrator of a particular moment in political history, no matter how interesting or newsworthy this period was. His works extend from commercial advertising to politics, from depicting celebrities to portraying the guerrillas, from the city’s nightlife to military marches or popular rallies, from the sensuality of female nudes to the scientific observation of Cuba’s seas. And he did all of this without diminishing either genres or subjects, moving naturally and authentically between glamour, beauty, and revolution. The exhibit, comprehended about 150 photographs, videos, and original documents, aims to reveal a complex and creative artist, and to educate audiences on the variety of his body of work and contextualize it, as well as to free the photographer from the “heavy weight of one photo”.

We received reactions to the title of the exhibition ‘Korda: Cuba, Che, Glamour’ from various sides. The impression is created that there would be a tribute to Che Guevara. ‘Stefan van Raay, director of the Cobra Museum of Modern Art, contradicts this in the response below:

The exhibition revolves entirely around the artist Korda. He took many photos, but was also the photographer of the most reproduced photo of the 20th century, “Heroic Guerrilla Fighter”, the portrait of Che Guevara, which in fact has always haunted him. This exhibition aims to introduce the public to the diversity of his entire legacy and to free him from the “heavy weight of this one photograph”. A photo that has been reproduced and commercialized worldwide, but has also been used by many others for various ideological purposes.

This historical retrospective of the work of Alberto Diaz Gutierrez, aka Korda, gives the Dutch public the opportunity to get to know all aspects of his work: His studio photography for fashion and advertising, often featuring beautiful models, his focus on individual spectators during political meetings in the first nine years of the Cuban Revolution and the portraits of the Cuban population in urban and rural areas. After 1968, when his archive was taken over by the state, he withdrew and focused solely on underwater photography.

The exhibition was opened by the Cuban ambassador on Thursday 17 March. Mayor Poppens was present. It is customary for a mayor to officially receive an ambassador. The Cobra Museum is responsible for the content of the exhibition.

Constant: Space + Colour

zondag 29 mei 2016 t/m zondag 25 sep 2016


Constant. Space + Colour. From Cobra to New Babylon

Karel Appel: The Opera

dinsdag 16 feb 2016 t/m zondag 15 mei 2016

foto Peter Tijhuis

Collection d’Art

zondag 18 jan 2015 t/m zondag 19 apr 2015

foto Peter Tijhuis
foto Peter Tijhuis

Michael Tedja: Snake

vrijdag 1 feb 2013 t/m zondag 26 mei 2013


Armando vs Armando

zondag 10 mrt 2013 t/m zondag 2 jun 2013


Klee + Cobra A child’s Play

donderdag 26 jan 2012 t/m zondag 22 apr 2012