BIT BY BIT – Digital Landscapes at Stedelijk Museum Schiedam

Hi Kyung Eun, Strange Cohabitation , 2021. Photo by Femke Reijermann

9th July – 6th November.

In the Bit by Bit exhibition in the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam, artist Noa Jansma sells the clouds from the sky above Schiedam. Muhcine Ennou shows the fantasy landscapes in which you can dream away virtually. And Hi Kyung Eun makes the elusive world of bits and bites tangible, and even fragile.

New living environment

As an extension of the exhibition Living Landscape, a major presentation of six centuries of art in the South Holland Maas delta , the three artists show how a completely new kind of landscape is created under the influence of rapidly changing technology. What does our living environment actually look like in digital reality? The bit from the title of the exhibition refers to a small computer unit with which you can build digital worlds. ‘ Bit by bit is an experimental exhibition that we can make thanks to a contribution from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science,’ says museum director Anne de Haij.

Investing in a cloud

Clouds, we all know them, but who actually owns them? If you are in Noa Jansma’s installation, you can choose your favorite copy, the prices vary from € 0.50 to € 10,000. The installation Buycloud by Noa Jansma (1996) is not only about digital ownership of something as ephemeral as a cloud, but also about one of the major topics of our time: the climate. Scientists predict that current emissions of harmful substances will cause the cotton wool clouds to disappear in 100 to 150 years. Market forces increase the price of a product when it is scarce. Buying a cloud now seems like a good investment.

Digital landscapes

While Jansma offers you ‘real’ clouds over Schiedam digitally, Muhcine Ennou (1991) only shows imaginary landscapes. He immerses you in his ‘lifelike’ dream world, made in an endless flow of creativity. Ennou’s digital work also lends itself well to online sales. If you purchase his work, you will receive an irreplaceable digital ownership certificate, a Non-Fungibel Token (NFT). Ennou’s NFTs can be found in on the OpenSea platform, among others.

Ceramic screens 

Artist Hi Kyung Eun (1995) is interested in the functioning of the digital landscape on a personal and intimate level. With the installation Strange Cohabitation she built a place where her digital self can live. You see fragments from her daily life projected on ceramic screens. She made the latter with a 3D printer. In this way, the artist builds a bridge between the physical and the virtual world.

Program line New art

Bit by Bit is part of the experimental New Art program of the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam. In doing so, the museum collaborates with new networks that arise from popular culture and/or non-Western art traditions. The pop-up exhibition Glashard. Post-graffiti in De Glasfabriek Schiedam was previously part of this program line.

Thanks to

Municipality of Schiedam, Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, Mondriaan Fund