Maartje Korstanje (’s-Heer Hendrikskinderen, 1982) grew up in the province of Zeeland and lives and works in Amsterdam. She was a student at the Sandberg Institute and was shortlisted for the Prix de Rome 2007.
Maartje Korstanje’s pieces are born from a sense of wonderment at seemingly mundane events. “My work covers a wide range of subjects, from headlights on the freeway, to hermit crabs on the beach; real-life encounters that left an intense impression, which I longed to see again and which kept returning to my mind’s eye.”
She is fascinated by our natural surroundings. “The animal kingdom inspired sculptures that contain those elements which are most fascinating about animals. It’s difficult to point out what these elements are, exactly, since they are so fragmented and combined in such unusual ways in the pieces, that the resulting image is unlike anything we are familiar with. They’re not literal sculptures of animals, but if they’re very good, they’re definitely ‘alive’. They look back at you.”
Maartje Korstanje has created new work especially for De Kabinetten van De Vleeshal: papier mâché sculptures made from brown corrugated cardboard. The papier mâché method lends an organic quality to the cardboard; a sharp contrast to the interior of a museum such as De Kabinetten van De Vleeshal. One room harbours a mythical beast emerging from undulating sand. An immense insect-like creature with the irregular shapes of a tree-trunk takes flight in another room. Korstanje also works with polyurethane foam, an expansive material often used in building. The combination of such humble materials as cardboard, textiles, plastic bags, and foam produces surprisingly lively sculptures that spark the imagination and evoke suggestions of an alternate reality.
Website: Maartje Korstanje