The Low Lands, Clouds and Horizonts

The Dutch have a special relationship with their landscape: both in the history of art and the history of landscape design. It was not just Dutch artists like Pieter Brueghel the Elder and Jacob van Ruisdael, who established landscape painting as an independent oeuvre at the highest level. The word »landscape« itself actually comes from the Dutch. From the very outset it never had the meaning of something natural. The original Dutch term came from the language of administration and referred to a geographical entity whose owner was expected to manage and work the land. »Nature as Artifice« – assembles the works of fifteen artists, who show through the medium of photography new ways of viewing and presenting archetypal artificial landscapes. Their works focus in particular on the how people relate to the land and emphasise its artificial aspects. Although here and there subtle references are made to the history of Dutch landscape painting, the essence of the displayed works is to be found in their breaking with the old myth of Dutch landscape as some kind of agrarian idyll.