*1969 in Beverwijk, NL, lives and works in Berlin
As professor at Städelschule Frankfurt and co-founder of the Berlin Program for Artists (BPA), along with his versatile, conceptual work, Willem de Rooij is a defining reference person for a young generation of artists. In the foyer at the Kunstverein, the visitor is welcomed by a magnificent white floral arrangement of ten different types of flowers, which references the textile work Blacks (2012 on view in a nearby room. The temporary floral sculptures are based on a detailed description, a list of flowers and a certificate of authenticity. The floral arrangement is presented in situ on a pedestal according to the instructions, as interpreted by a local florist, who also has to help prevent any future signs of deterioration. In addition to beauty and harmony, the relationship between flower and floral arrangement might refer to society in abstract terms such as individual and community, terms that also play a role in the work Blacks. The work, created in collaboration with a professional hand loom weavers, is made from a 10-part thread of various hues of black, was inspired by the structural polarity (warp/weft) of woven fabrics, and strives to create meaning – such as equality and difference – solely with the material. While the differentiated color values are visible at close range, from a distance they merge to form a monochrome surface of great perceived depth.