26th May - 9th July 2018

The Dream of a Common Language, solo show

For the exhibition The Dream of a Common Language, artist Judith Westerveld creates a new body of work that explores the concept of a common language by focusing on marginalized, endangered and extinct languages. Central to her work is a collaborative process of language learning, storytelling and reflecting upon the history and present state of the languages of the San and Khoikhoi, the indigenous people of South Africa, within the broader context of the Dutch colonization of South Africa.

What if the Dutch colonists had learned to speak these languages instead of imposing their own language upon those they encountered? And what if we would learn these languages today? These are formative questions in Westerveld’s work.

The artworks tell the stories of different San and Khoe languages and the people that speak them, stories that are often missing in dominant historiographies and present day discourse.

OPENING: 26th May, 17.00 – 19.00 hrs
EXHIBITION on till 9th July 2018

Judith Westerveld (1985) grew up in South Africa and the Netherlands. She studied fine art at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, followed by the Master Artistic Research at the University of Amsterdam. In her audio-visual, collage and performance based work, she researches the relation between the archive, the voice and the narrative, probing who is heard and seen, remembered and historicized in a postcolonial world. Language, in spoken, written and embodied form, plays an important role in her work.

Recent exhibitions include: A Global Table, De Hallen/Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem, 2017/2018; A Week of Womxn, District Six Homecoming Centre 2018, Cape Town; Womxn, Afrovibes, De Balie, Amsterdam, 2017; Re(as)sisting Narratives, District Six Museum, Cape Town, 2016; Hesitation, Lumen Travo Gallery, Amsterdam, 2016; Re(as)sisting Narratives, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, 2016; Q-u-i-j-t, Beelden voor de Radio, Residency at Opium Radio op 4, VondelCS, Amsterdam 2015.