Ondertussen: Bernice Nauta

29 May - 9 July 2017
Location: Hogewal 1-9, The Hague
Open: Monday - Friday: 11-17 hrs; Saturday and Sunday: 12-17 uur
Closed: 3 June - 5 June (Pentecost weekend)

On the 3rd of September 2014 Bernice Nauta made a drawing of her artist studio. It was not a literal representation of the space, but more a way of mapping the images and motifs that mattered to her at that point in time: a figure, a globe, an elixir of life potion bottle, a book, a light cone, a skull in formaldehyde, a mask in a bottle, a heart, pencils, lungs, a rib cage, paintings, a table, tubes, chemistry glassware, trestle table supports, a cupboard containing a suspended drawing and a snake. The drawing functioned as a map of her fascinations and mindset.

This work was the starting point for a long-term research into the scope of her memory. The drawing was put away, and Bernice Nauta decided that at least once every week for the period of one year she would make a drawing of her studio from memory. On the 1st of September 2015 she finished the last drawing in a series of 76. Together they form the series Imaginary studio. In Bernice Nauta's mind the daily effort to capture the image from her memory on paper as accurately as possible felt a little paradoxical. It seemed like a desperate effort to resist the passage of time, in the realization that everything is constantly changing. The title of each drawing is the date when it was made. Bernice Nauta thinks this date is relevant, because in the words of the philosopher Roland Barthes, it ‘...makes us contemplate life, death, and the continuous disappearance of generations'.

On a daily basis two original drawings from the series will be presented in the Ondertussen space. After 38 days all drawings will have been shown. There will be objects and markings on the floor that refer to the imaginary space depicted in the drawings. These interventions create an entrance into the imaginary studio.

The drawings are collected in the publication Imaginary studio, that was published earlier in 2017. For this publication, for sale at Stroom, Bernice Nauta received a PRO Kunstprojecten (Art Projects) subsidy.


The Ondertussen space links Stroom's exhibition program to its enabling policy for artists. This policy aims to strengthen and improve the visibility of The Hague's artistic climate. Presentations in Ondertussen are usually the result of subsidies provided by Stroom, but can also show the results of mediation by Stroom or of other stimulating activities. The presentations are intended to illustrate the diversity of the grant applications and the positive effect of our enabling policy for artists. The presentations can vary from (interim) reports of (research) projects and residencies to network presentations. The Ondertussen presentation is the responsibility of the applicant.

Archive Ondertussen presentations

Bernice Nauta, publication 'Imaginary Studio'
photo: design: Julian Sirre