Ins Blaue hinein träumen

Margriet Smulders

Artist Margriet Smulders
Title Ins Blaue hinein träumen
Description A trilogy of ceilings called Quelle (source, 11x24m), Strömung (flow, 9x18m) and Mündung (mouth, 6x18m)
Materials Sublimation print on aluminum panels
Location EMsgalerie, Rheine (DE)
Commissioned by Hermann Klaas Projektentwicklung
Art director Mothership – Jeroen Everaert
Producer Mothership – Maartje Berendsen / TS Visuals
Photographer Sandra Albers
Artist’s website
Thanks to Thomas Schaper Design

Ins Blaue hinein träumen is a trilogy of ceilings calledQuelle (source, 11x24m), Strömung (flow, 9x18m) and Mündung (mouth, 6x18m). The three ceilings embellish the Emsgalerie in Rheine, Germany and are the biggest productions Smulders has ever undertaken and executed.

A conversation Smulders had with two women on the site of the new shopping centre is her source of inspiration. On being asked what these ladies thought of the Emsgalerie construction project, they were not hesitant to vent their doubts: no longer would they be able to see the river Ems. This inspired Smulders to permanently present the river Ems and its surroundings to the local people and the Emsgalerie public, lest it be forgotten.

The titles given to the three ceilings form the starting-point of the story of the River Ems. The Quelle(source) narrates of frisky liveliness. There is a stork. We see a snake shifting towards a tempting apple, a hint of possible danger in Paradise, a shadow cast on this pastoral scene. Smulders tempts the spectator into exploring this thrilling world of colourful abundance and plenty. And if we let us get inundated with this exciting universe that is peaceful, yet also unsettling and sometimes macabre, we will not be let down. On the river banks, we discover a buzzard with its fresh prey, a squirrel, a brace of mallards, a fox determined to steal the eggs from a nest across the river. There’s the golden pheasant recurring in every scene to rule the roost in the final ceiling, Mündung(mouth). It shows the river at majestic peace, having passed the middle ceiling Strömung (flow), where the water ripples, giving away the rough imperfections of the riverbed.

In these multilayered scenes depicted by the three ceilings, it is not just the face-value story to be told. To Smulders, the river is a telling metaphor for Life itself: you can walk along the river, keeping your distance or you can jump in and go with its flow. The source, flow and mouth then symbolize the coming of age process: youthful enthusiasm at the start, the turmoil of learning to grow up and finally graceful acceptance of this great miracle that’s called Life, having come full circle.

© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers
© Sandra Albers

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