04 February 2007
W139 is a combined work/exhibition space for contemporary art in the centre of Amsterdam. It was founded in 1979 by a group of young artists who wanted to present an alternative to what was shown by the city’s museums and commercial galleries at the time, which they felt to be too uniform. In the course of 25 years, W139 has developed from an anti-establishment laboratorium into a professional non-institutional platform for art. Today W139 operates parallel to, rather than in opposition with the more established venues. W139 provides ‘room for risk’, fulfilling a unique role in the Dutch art world.
For the opening exhibition of her renovated birthplace W139 invited five artists: Iris Kensmil, Adriaan Rees, Rob Birza, Peter Vos and Paul Drissen. The question was if they wanted to make works that fuse together with the architecture of the exhibition space. Futhermore the object was that (parts of) their works permanently stay present in the exhibition space. Not to restore the inviolable status of the everlasting art piece but rather to fade the boundaries between the different autonomous contributions. Following artists can ignore, affect, change, complete or destroy the works that are present.