July 16, 2018

Nederlands - Things that matter exhibition in Amsterdam

We are surrounded by signs, if we choose to read them is another thing. One sign that I chose to follow was that in the exact day when one of my best friends told me that she is coming to Amsterdam for a short trip, I found out about this exhibition. Unknown are internet's ways, but it knowing my interests and finding out that I was in search for an accommodation near Amsterdam, pointed me to Things that matter.
I was intrigued by the title, in an era of minimalism, of de-cluttering, of freeing ourselves of possessions, here is an exhibition with objects, but not any objects, the ones that have sentimental value above anything else.

What people choose to take with them when they left their home, being forced to do that, or leaving willingly? More interesting than any Instagram story and more true than any Facebook post, what people consider worth keeping and sometimes protecting? A small window into a moment's reality, how could I say no?

First of all the exhibition is on the ground floor of Troopeen Muuseeum or in other words the Ethnographic Museum of Amsterdam. If you are interested in Ethnography, please do take a look at it as the whole museum is worth a visit.
The exhibition is divided up in 10 (I think) boxes, each of them curated by a different artist and with a different topic. I have to admit that the one with What do clothes say about you? and When is culture yours? got my interest. So in true spoiler fashion I will not write much about the exhibition, cause you have to see it for yourselves.

The When is culture yours? box spoke to me in different ways, as I am much involved in promoting the Romanian culture, but I sanction cultural appropriation. When is that border crossed? When promoting parts of a culture, becomes cultural appropriation? And as we are on the topic, what is culture?

Are clothes culture? Are dreadlocks culture? Are symbols culture? What about movies? Live shows? Books? Food? What is culture? and what as an European am I allowed to borrow from other continents?

I love wearing Romanian blouses. Should I be offended if someone from Asia loves them too? When is it OK for the big fashion labels to take inspiration from local culture and when that inspiration becomes profit?

You see, all sort of questions arose from this exhibition and if you are passionate about this topics you should visit it, too.

Just a word of advice, maybe plan your visit in the coming months, I've understood that the exhibition will become permanent, as they don't have yet any leaflets about it, or any books and I am positive that there are books about those topics.
Just to recap, the exhibition is in the Ethnographic Museum in Amsterdam, which is called Troopeen Muuseeum. If you travelled to Amsterdam by car, parking as a little bit of a hassle, but we did find a parking spot on a small street opposite to the museum. It is opened daily except Mondays. Have fun!

I hope you loved reading this post as much as I loved putting it together! Also, if you fancy keeping in contact with me, drop a line at on Facebook.


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