Installation view The Politics of Quiet Shrine (1996), Meredith Monk: Calling (2023), co-presented by Oude Kerk Amsterdam and Hartwig Art Foundation. Photo Aad Hoogendoorn
Meredith Monk: Calling
Oct 21, 2023 – Mar 17, 2024
Oude Kerk / Hartwig Art Foundation
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Meredith Monk: Calling celebrates the visionary work of artist Meredith Monk, inviting visitors to explore and discover the work of one of this era’s most original artists. The exhibition translates her live performances and concerts into encounters with immersive video- and sound installations in the alcoves and open public space of the 700-year old church.

Living legend Meredith Monk has dedicated her career to exploring the potential of the human voice. Her enigmatic, playful, and profound compositions and live works have pushed the boundaries of music, performance, and visual art. The presentation is a unique retrospective of her influential performance practice in which she has constantly sought harmony between the spiritual, the earth, and human existence.

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The sound of Monk’s singing is often described as ancient and contemporary at the same time. Her groundbreaking vocal work, music, theatre performances and films find a natural home in the Oude Kerk as Amsterdam’s oldest building and venue for contemporary art. The exhibition aims at bringing her influential work in voice, music, staged performances and film into an experience beyond the stage.

Key works such as 2008’s Songs of Ascension, Quarry (1976) and ATLAS (1991/1998) will be updated as as new installations for the Oude Kerk. Especially for Amsterdam, the interactive installation American Archaeology (1998) will be updated as a local version: Amsterdam Archeology (2023). Visitors are invited to bring and add meaningful objects to the work to build a monument of collective memories.

At the same time, Monk plays with the idea of the church as a body of archived stories, sharing her sound pieces and documentaries, scores and drawings; featuring, in particular, material from Indra’s Net, her most recent work which premiered in June 2023 Amsterdam as a co-presentation of Holland Festival and Hartwig Art Foundation.

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