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March 28: Hofstede de Groot lecture by Nancy Troy on Mondrian

On Wednesday the 28th of March 2012 the RKD will hold a second Hofstede de Groot lecture. The lecture, entitled ‘(Un)Becoming Sculpture: Mondrian’s New York Furniture’, will be held by Prof. Dr. Nancy Troy, affiliated to the Stanford University and specialist on Mondrian and De Stijl movement. The Hofstede de Groot lecture is the perfect opportunity for the RKD to place art historians in the limelight who delivered groundbreaking results in research into Dutch art.

In her lecture Nancy Troy traces the history of the furniture which Piet Mondrian (1872-1944) left behind in his New Yorkstudio after his death. The desk, stool and kitchen step have been exhibited many times since the nineteen fifties, and have been presented as sculptures since the nineteen seventies. The description in the catalogue raisonné on Mondrian’s work from 1998 under the section ‘Catalogue of the furniture’ also implies that these pieces should be seen as art objects. Did Mondrian intend for these pieces of furniture to be part of his work? Or is there a different reason for them being regarded as sculptures? In her lecture, Nancy Troy will sketch the history of the upgrading of these functional objects to valuable art objects.

Nancy Troy graduated in 1979 from YaleUniversitywith a PhD thesis on the spatial designs of De Stijl. In the following years she studied various subjects including French decorative art (Modernism and the Decorative Arts in France: Art Nouveau to Le Corbusier, 1991) and originality and reproduction in early 20th-century French art and fashion (Couture Culture: A Study in Modern Art and Fashion, 2002). She recently refocused her attention to Mondrian. Later this year she plans to publish The Afterlife of Piet Mondrian, on the spread of Mondrian’s descriptive language in both elite and popular culture.

The Hofstede de Groot lecture is named after the art historian Cornelis Hofstede de Groot (1863-1930), whose extensive art historical documentation formed the basis for the RKD’s collection. The text of the Hofstede De Groot lecture will be published as the second part of the Hofstede de Groot lecture series.

The lecture will be introduced by Rudi Ekkart, director, who will throw light on the abundant archives and documentation on Mondrian and De Stijl which are housed at the RKD.  Furthermore, Wietse Coppes, assistant curator of De Stijl archives, will lead you through a virtual tour of Mondrian’s Parisian studio.

The Hofstede de Groot lecture will be rounded off with drinks.

Date: Wednesday 28th of March 2012

Time:15.00 (from 14.30 you will be welcomed with a cup of coffee)

Location: Auditorium of the National Library complex (Koninklijke Bibliotheek), Prins Willem Alexanderhof 5,The Hague

Language: the lecture by Nancy Troy will be held in English

Registration is compulsory and can be done so via the online registration form (in Dutch).

De afgedrukte pagina is te vinden op http://english.rkd.nl/archive/news/2012/second-hofstede-de-groot-lecture-on-mondrian2019s-kitchen-step-by-nancy-troy