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Art in public spaces

As art developer Mothership plays an important role in the creative process. Whether we are involved as mediators between client and artist, consultant and problem solvers in area development or concept designer in communication-plans, Mothership creates a sense of place and adds value by incorporating art in the public space.
Motherships’ main objective is to make art available to as many people as possible so everybody can be touched by art and enjoy it. Everything from city dressing and art as a communication tool to commissioned art and cultural participation.

Acting as a producer, consultant, mediator and facilitator Mothership brings culture and commerce together creating added value to sites and projects. Incorporating art in the public space not only benefits organizations and artists but also creates added value to society. Founded in 2005 by Jeroen Everaert, Mothership has since realized over 300 art projects in the public domain commissioned by both public and private clients.

Motherships team consist of specialists from different backgrounds, from digital whizz kids to sociologists and from artists to project managers.

    Our mission

    Motherships’ mission as formulated by Jeroen Everaert: ‘creating unexpected confrontations with art in the public realm, and reach and move as many people as possible’. This means that Mothership focuses on art that has the quality to elevate the public spheres to a higher positive level.

    Retail has become a focus area for Mothership, our most recent major project in Germany, the Ems -Galerie Shopping Mall in Rheine, is a great starting point for further international expansion. Below you can find an overview of recent retail projects that showcase the potential added value art can provide

      Münsterländische Volkszeitung, 22 september 2016

      Amsterdam ‘Oersoep’ (Primaeval Soup Amsterdam)

      From back alley to touristic hotspot, Mothership successfully used art to transform the passageway Beurspassage, between the Nieuwendijk and the Damrak in Amsterdam, into a crowd stopping eye-catcher. On December 2nd 2016 Dutch Royalty opened the biggest artwork to date ‘Amsterdam Oersoep’ for which Mothership created the concept. Together with artists Arno Coenen, Iris Roskam, Hans van Benthem and specialized craftsmen, Mothership produced this amazing piece of art in the centre of Amsterdam. A traditional Italian Terazzofloor, a 450 square meter glass mosaic ceiling and walls covered with handmade tiles covered with gold-leaf symbols, transform the hallway into an almost hallucinating experience.

      The artwork, ‘Amsterdam Oersoep’ is an ode to the canals of Amsterdam and pays tribute to the magical powers of water in relation to the beginning of life on earth. Artist Hans van Benthem designed the gold plated chandeliers for the passageway made up out of old bicycle parts and his handmade stained glass objects light the walls of the Beurspassage. Property developer Bouwinvest originally asked Mothership to help them with a small artwork for one of the walls of the passageway but Motherships’ Jeroen Everaert convinced Bouwinvest to change the complete passageway into a work of art. Everaert: Art can add enormous PR value to property and sites. Visitors to Amsterdam will come and visit the Beurspassage, take photographs and share them on social media leading to even more visitors wanting to see the artwork themselves. The artwork becomes a real tourist magnet leading to increased business for the surrounding shops and businesses. Here you can see an interview with Motherships’ Jeroen Everaert about the artwork ‘Amsterdam Oersoep’.

        Impression: Beeldfabriek

        Market Hall Rotterdam

        On October 1st 2014, Horn of Plenty, literally and figuratively the largest art project Mothership has undertaken so far, was officially opened to the public. An 11,000 square meter artwork by Arno & Iris graces the ceiling of the Market Hall in Rotterdam. Architecture and art go hand in hand in a building that has a huge impact on the city, its visitors and businesses located inside and around the Market Hall.

        Art as a communication tool has proven itself eminently: instead of the expected 4 million visitors, the Market Hall attracted more than 8.5 million visitors in the first year of opening. Not only the Markethall benefitted it has also put Rotterdam back on the international map. Images of the Market Hall and the artwork travelled around the world through social media and press coverage. Even though a big part of the market entrepreneurs in the Market Hall found themselves very skeptical at first, since the opening they have seen their turnover rise. Furthermore, research shows that 70% of visitors to the Market Hall actually buy something once they are inside. That too is a much bigger success than initially expected. The value of the property surrounding the Market Hall has grown steadily and the plans for redevelopment of the area are put in the fast lane. The Market Hall, the parking garage and the artwork have already won several (inter)national awards. Last week the most recent award was received: the FGHVastgoedprijs2016 (Dutch Retail Prize for realized retail projects with guts, vision and entrepreneurship). The added value of art has clearly proven itself for the Market Hall.

          Photo: Gilbert Sopakuwa
          Photo: Gilbert Sopakuwa

          Shopping area at Terminal 2 Schiphol

          At the Dutch Airport Amsterdam Schiphol a new store opened on March 8th 2016 in the high end fashion circuit of Terminal 2 on the intercontinental pier. Mothership was asked to developed the concept for Lagardère Fashion Retail, aiming to offer customers an experience that surprises, creates positive vibes and leads to a longer stay inside the store. The fashion store was “hindered” by a giant pillar and Mothership transformed this pillar from stand-in-the-way to breathtaking eye catcher. To accomplish this Mothership used a technological innovation that, to our knowledge, has not yet been used previously in art: flexible LED screens wrapped around a pillar (with a diameter of 4 meters) stretching to cover the ceiling as well.

          The LED surface is programmed to show a 10 minute loop, made by motion designer Eline Wieland. In consultation with the client the theme “nature of all parts of the world” was chosen. In the loop natural elements of these continents interconnect to create an atmosphere that aims to be surprising, makes you laugh, calms and remains exciting for the 10 minutes it lasts. The title of this stunning film is ‘head in the clouds : connecting worlds’.

          Eline Wieland previously worked with Mothership for the opening of Rotterdam Central Station where she made the astonishing films for the 40 meters wide LED screen in the central hall.

            Shopping Mall Rheine

            Our concepts are appreciated far beyond the Dutch borders. Mothership and artist Margriet Smulders have been working together to create 3 mind-blowing ceilings for a new 17.000 square meters shopping mall in Germany, the Ems Galerie in Rheine. The Ems gallery is a project of Hermann Klaas Entwicklung. Mothership was invited by interior architects Thomas Schaper and Marielle Wichards to help make the gallery a showstopper. On the 21st of September 2016 the shopping mall was opened to the public. The structure of the complex looks like a covered street. On one side the building is adjacent to the river Ems and the other side opens up to the city center. The building consists of three parts that are interconnected. The materials used on the interior of the mall reflects elements that are typical of Rheine: textiles, water, trade and nature.

            The three parts of the building each have a ceiling that consists of a line of smaller acoustical ceiling plates hanging directly underneath the main ceiling. The acoustical ceiling plates hold the sprinklers and lighting and offered the perfect canvas for Mothership to work with. The artwork should attract extra visitors, create a more pleasant shopping experience and create a media buzz.

            Margriets’ work is best known for her mesmerizing colorful wall filling creations and murals filled with contradictions between science and intuition, dark and light and mind and body. Her biggest motive is to use art as a way to make the world a more beautiful place.

            Margriet uses the camera as her paintbrush and in her work ‘Ins Blaue hinein träumen’ has created an impressive and seducing ode to the river Ems and its surroundings. Using vibrant fresh flowers, water, textiles and powerful symbolisms she portrays the river Ems as a metaphor for life. The three ceilings have the individual titles “Quelle” (source), “Strömung” (flow) and “Mündung” (mouth). Just like a person grows from youth, through the turbulence of puberty into a balanced adulthood, the river starts from the source, ‘die Quelle’, and the flow, ‘die stromung’, determines the mouth, ‘die Mundung’, of the river. The work emphasizes important pluspoints of Rheine: its location near the river in a beautiful natural environment and the rich textile history, and offers the people of Rheine a brand new heart to the city.

              Photo: Sandra Albers

              Mothership Beyond…

              Around the same time last year we celebrated our ten year anniversary with the book ‘Mothership and Beyond’. A visionary title because this year we have actually gone beyond…

                Mothership beyond: Conquering Germany…

                Just over the Dutch border in Rheine Germany, Herman Klaas Projektentwicklung has developed a brand new shopping-mall, the EmsGalery. Thomas Schaper Design is responsible for the mall’s beautiful interior using natural colours and materials and invited Mothership to join the design team. Motherships’ knowledge and experience was needed to add value to the building and shopping experience and attract extra visitors. Just like the concept Mothership designed for the artwork ‘Horn of Plenty’ in the Markthal in Rotterdam, the artwork should draw extra visitors to the EmsGalery and extend their stay inside the mall leading to increasing turnovers for the shop owners.

                Mothership developed a concept for the 5000 square feet ceilings of the mall and invited three artists to design an artwork. Together with the developers and designers of the EmsGalery Mothership chose the design of Dutch artist Margriet Smulders for the three ceilings of the Ems Galery.

                Margriet Smulders created the tryptich ‘Ins Blaue hineintraumen’, her largest work to date. Three big panels with photographic still lifes portray the river Ems that flows next to the newly built EmsGallery. The three panels visualize the source ‘Quelle’, the river flow ‘Strömung’ and the river mouth ‘Mündung’. The artwork not only shows the beginning and ending of the river Ems but also symbolizes the human lifecycle form birth to death. Just like in earlier work of Margriet, nature (flowers, water and animals) plays an important role in this artwork. She has also incorporated textiles, referring to the rich textile history of Rheine.

                TS Visuals was responsible for the high quality printing of the artwork. Just like they did with the ceiling of the Marthal in Rotterdam, they were again more than able to produce prints in rich colours with a perfect finish and a beautiful depth.

                The opening of the EmsGalery received a lot of press coverage in Germany and the Netherlands and showcases the international abilities of Mothership.

                Click here to read the artikel in the Münsterländische Volkszeitung.

                  Photo: Sandra Albers

                  Art for the casino

                  The Casino in Enschede is situated in a very enclosed architectural building that is not exactly welcoming to visitors. The Casino also shares an underground parking garage with the Medisch Spectrum Twente hospital where they also have a hard time getting noticed by visitors. The Casino asked Mothership to help them stand out and make visitors feel more welcome to spend some quality time in their exciting casino. An artwork that is not only welcoming but also makes guests feel happy and excited.

                  Calvin Sprague has designed a series of beautiful graphic designs to accentuate the unique features the casino has to offer; meeting people, card games, excitement, food and drinks, live music combined with local symbolism. The 110 meter glass wall on the second floor of the underground parking garage and the entrance of the Casino will be transformed into a colourful procession of classy retro style characters and symbols.

                  Thanks to the efforts of Erna aan de Stegge of KunsWerkt Mothership was able to realise this project. For more information about Erna aan de Stegge and Kunstwerkt please click here.

                    Impression: Calvin Sprague