After wandering through the center of Amsterdam, Jan van der Horn's elves flew back to Amsterdam-North. Now they are in Expocafé ZAMEN.
Visual artist Jan van der Horn has exhibited in ZAMEN before. This time he is back and brought us his Elves. “He lives nearby and is a local. You can actually call him a resident,'' says Lana van Beelen, who runs ZAMEN together with her mother Marianne.
“We started here nine years ago when this building was still a garage for Mercedes old-timers,” says Lana van Beelen. Here, on this site, there are about four hundred creative workplaces. The people – especially artists – who work there needed a place to come together at the time. My mother and I then created a space for this creative community. We started simple, with some canteen tables, a coffee machine and a refrigerator in this former garage. Jan van der Horn is one of the artists who have been coming to ZAMEN for years now.”
Soon visitors asked if they could also exhibit there and little by little it grew into the atmospheric expocafé it is today, with changing exhibitions by artists from the area, and now also from the rest of the city. Photos, paintings, kimonos, sculptures, videos and theater performances - ZAMEN represents all disciplines of art. “Good coffee and art, that's what we want,” says Lana van Beelen. ZAMEN has now grown into a café that can be transformed into a club, restaurant or gallery, thanks to the mobile art walls. It's Hip and Happening here!
Jan van der Horn is one of the artists who regularly exhibits at ZAMEN. He also got models from here who posed for his Muzes series. I think it's special to be part of that," says Lana van Beelen. “I also posed for him and so did my kids. I love people who create, I find it cool. His energy comes across and there is depth in his work. I find his use of colour very special. He can step into his own child and make his own world. You step into another world.”
Lana van Beelen now asks not only artists from the area, but from all over the city to show their work here. “I look in my own circle, at galleries and I search the internet.” In the coming year, the focus will be on art by female artists and artists with an African background. In addition, people from the ZAMENHOF building are always welcome. This is their livingroom. Jan van der Horn always gets a spot. “So now he has his own corner again. His fairytail corner.”
Madeleine Rood / Amsterdam 20 April 2023 (translated and edited by LvB)
The elves by visual artist Jan van der Horn can be seen in Expocafé ZAMEN from the end of April till the 12th of May. More info: www.janvanderhorn.nl
Lana van Beelen is one of the Founders and creative director of ZAMEN