Endless Imagination - Museum Cobra

Endless Imagination

Saturday 13 Jul 2024 until Sunday 8 Sep 2024

Endless Imagination
The exhibition Endless Imagination features entries for the Special Award 2023-2024, a promotional program and visual arts competition for artists with disabilities. For this exhibition, Museum Cobra invited the (grand)children of Cobra artists Eugène Brands and Shinkichi Tajiri to make a selection from the submitted works. In addition, several professionals and various museums chose their favorites from the submissions. From each selection, Museum Cobra then chose works that resonate with the ideas of the Cobra movement.

Art by people with disabilities was an important source of inspiration for the Cobra artists. Defying academic rules, they found purity and uninhibitedness in Art Brut.

Both Karel Appel and Corneille visited exhibitions at Hôpital Sainte-Anne, Paris’ psychiatric institution. Appel bought the catalogue which consisted solely of text and used it as a sketchbook. Corneille provided his copy with drawings in the margin. Artist Eugène Brands also read books on the subject, which he always kept. Danish painter Carl-Henning Pedersen even said, ‘I wish I could paint as well.

Brands and Tajiri
The first museum exhibition of Cobra in 1949 at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam featured the work of Brands and Tajiri in the same room, after which a long friendship between the two artists followed.

Brands’ daughter Eugénie and Tajiri’s grandchildren Tanéa and Shakuru judged the Special Award entries on the basis of their expression and individuality, keeping in mind the work of their father and grandfather, respectively. The three heirs all work in the creative sector. Their selection is characterized by colour, humor and originality and is complemented by works of art from the Cobra collection.

Special Award
The Special Award is an initiative of Special Arts, a national foundation that promotes art and cultural participation for artists with disabilities. With a wide range of activities, Special Arts aims to encourage and enthuse these artists and others to work with art.

The exhibition Endless Imagination will have a sequel in September 2024 with the exhibition Recall of Infinity. A jury will choose the Special Award winner 2024 from the artists on display there.