1965-1985 - Countercultures and DIY archive - Part of The Collection Now


1965-1985 - Countercultures and DIY archive Part of The Collection Now

02/11/2013 - 02/07/2017
Curators: Christiane Berndes, Charles Esche, Diana Franssen
First floor collection building


On the first floor, which is devoted to the period 1965-1985, artists explore the consequences of the counter culture that developed post-1968. Dropping out, punk, feminism and gay rights influenced not only aesthetics but the ethics of art. New forms of dissemination and participation arose. This floor is constructed in the form of a DIY archive, in which visitors can explore for themselves the art forms of the period and create small presentations for others. The multiple media of the time, such as prints and multiples, artists’ books, posters, video works, LPs and audio tapes are all brought together in a single archive of the time. In a cinema and two project rooms on this floor attention is given to special developments of this period.

The Collection Now

Starting on 2 November 2013, the Van Abbemuseum presents a completely new narrative presentation of its collection. Entitled The Collection Now, the exhibition brings together artworks, archives, histories and relations in historical constellations that connect individual artworks to the social and political contexts in which they were made and exhibited. The works are spread over five floors, starting with a Picasso from 1909 and ending with works from 2013. Never before has the museum exhibited such a comprehensive selection with over 600 elements being brought together to tell stories of aesthetics, ethics and politics over the last 100 years. Besides giving attention to art from the last century, a significant part of the exhibition is devoted to art after 1989 and to new acquisitions not previously shown. The presentation can be seen for five years, but it is certainly not a static exhibition, there will be regular changes.

Spring 2017: changes in collection presentation

In the spring of 2017, the five floors of The Collection Now will change to new exhibitions with artworks from the Van Abbemuseum's collection. On the page 'collection under construction' you can find a overview of the changes in the collection building. This part of The Collection Now will be on display until 2 July 2017. On 23 September the Werksalon will be opened on this floor.