Stigter Van Doesburg is pleased to present Yes These Eyes are the Windows, the third solo show at the gallery by Saskia Olde Wolbers.
The off-screen voice in the film Yes, These Eyes Are the Windows belongs, we soon realize, to a personally involved narrator. Surreally, this narrator is a house that since 1873 and right up to today was the setting for events plainly of great significance for London, the public and the arts. It is the Brixton house where the 19-year-old Vincent van Gogh took lodgings for a year while employed at his uncle’s London gallery. It would still be some time before he became an artist – perhaps the most famous, most popular artist of all time.
In the film, we discover the dilapidated interiors of a modest terraced house that was last renovated in the 1950s and was in the same family till 2011. Pans around its empty rooms, alternate with brief fictive scenes from the lives of its residents, while our eyes repeatedly penetrate spaces that appear to be dripping and melting in strangely organic fashion. As if we were suddenly visiting the house’s mental inner life, a flourishing biotope in a feverish world of images that constantly refers us to the myth created around Van Gogh.
In the 1970s the house was declared a historic monument, which prevented it from being demolished, and received a blue plaque for its façade. In 2012 it was put up for auction and purchased unseen by the Chinese businessman James Wang.
In Saskia Olde Wolbers’ film facts become very fluid – as if in an underwater world. Yes, These Eyes Are the Windows revolves around the mythic aspect of the reception of Van Gogh’s œuvre, with its legends asserting their own independence, and invites us to immerse ourselves in a world of collective memory steeped in subjectivity.
Bice Curiger –2016, Fondation Vincent van Gogh Arles.
In 2014, Yes, These eyes are the Windows existed as an interactive sound piece shown in the house in London commissioned by Artangel. The first half of 2016 the film was shown at the Fondation Vincent van Gogh Arles and comes with a catalogue with essays by Bice Curiger and Dr Antony Hudek.
With thanks to Artangel and James Wang. Funded by the Art council England, The Elephant trust and the Mondrian Fund.
Voice over Tom Brooke
18 min HD video for projection
Additional voices : Paul Ritter, Sophie Stanton, Nick Underwood
Voice over Director : Lu Kemp
Voice overs recorded at Essential Music with Dave Chilton & Lucinda Mason Brown
Director of Photography location : Eben Bolter
Actors : Matti Houghton, Vera Chok, Wai Wing, Michael Shaeffer
Editor : David Panos
Music : Daniel Pemberton
Sound : Tom Sedgwick
Production assistants : Anna Hughes, Rowan Wigley, Miriam AustenFocus : AJ Golesworthy