HOMO TURISTICUS ON TOUR
Photographic works of Co de Kruijf
On show at ART OF PHYSIO from November 19, 2021 to April 8, 2022.
This exhibition consists of a selection of photographic works that were exhibited in 2020 at the Amsterdam Gallery WM under the title ‘Homo Turisticus, When crowds were still common.’
Introduction of Homo Turisticus by Sebastian Rypson, curator of the Amsterdam GalleryWM
Co de Kruijf’s ongoing Homo Turisticus series is something of a conundrum. At first glance, it seems to fit squarely in the genre of documentary street photography, yet something just doesn’t seem right. Or alternatively, perhaps something just seems too right. Every human subject captured in the frame seems to be exactly in the exact middle of doing something – whatever and however banal it might be. They might be taking a bite out of a hamburger, stuffing a fry into their mouths, walking their dog or simply looking for directions, but the sheer timing of the shot is incredible. And there seem to be so many of them, the human subjects that populate de Kruijf’s photographs.
It seems inconceivable that he just happened to be there, in exactly the right place, at exactly the right time, and click! The perfect shot. Seventeen people at the same time, perfectly caught on camera, in the split second of an everyday act. Yet there they are, de Kruijf’s pictures, proof of his impossibly perfect timing.
Truthfully though, it actually is impossible. De Kruijf’s photographs are carefully constructed, texturally layered, balanced compositions. Like an 18th century sketchbook artist on the corner of a busy thoroughfare, de Kruijf stands on the same spot for a considerable amount of time, observing the procession of a carnivalesque humanity going about its pleasure and business. There are smiles and grimaces, walkers and cyclists, beer drinkers and health freaks, dog-walkers and cigarette smokers, and much else besides. And de Kruijf captures them all, all of them available in his repository of digital sketches. It is only later that he carefully forges his image, labouriously adding this person and that, doing this thing or the other. The result is an image of spectacular density and rich thematic compression. It becomes a veritable feast for the eyes, a voyeur’s wet dream, each and every subject and detail visible and available for close scrutiny.
Most street-photographs are shot on the spur of the moment, usually focussing on one, perhaps two subjects in an oftentimes classical urban setting. De Kruijf’s photographic mise en scènes on the other hand are carefully cultivated and focus on all subjects at once. They are extreme compressions of time and space, raising not only questions about the nature of street-photography and documentary in particular, but also about simultaneous perception and the possibilities of synchronicity.
Shot in several tourist destinations around the world (we see scenes from Amsterdam, Hong Kong, Beijing, Lucca and Pisa for example), de Kruijf’s photographs are densely peopled with that most ubiquitous of species; the human tourist. Yet it is without resentment that he populates his tableaus with that universal species, indeed, de Kruijf seems to revel in the contradictory, strangely diverse uniformity of his fellow sightseers. Indeed, in these times of Covid we may have forgotten – or sometimes even missed – the feel of crowds, of hordes, of throngs of visitors that invade our cities’ public spaces. And despite the problematic underlying, socio-economic structures or environmental consequences that accompany global tourism, it would seem the moment, this moment, to shine a light on what we all have been, at one time or another, and hopefully might be again; Homo Turisticus – when crowds were still commonplace..
Interested in buying a print?
Prints are mounted on dibond and finished with acrylic glass,
including suspension profile on the back
47 x 70 cm Euro 390
67 x 100 cm Euro 780
80 x 100 cm Euro 912
100 x 150 cm Euro 1750
67 x 215 cm Euro 1680
The works are numbered and supplied with a certificate of authenticity.
All prints and all sizes are limited edition.
Prices include VAT.
Other finnishes and formats are available on request.
For information and the purchase of works, please contact Co de Kruijf
Co de Kruijf
On Co de Kruijf
After graduating in Social and Political Sciences from the University of Amsterdam, Co de Kruijf worked in the travel industry. For his work as a tour guide and researcher he has traveled extensively in Asia and especially in China. He has always combined his travels with photography. His photos and reports have been published in Dutch and foreign media and have contributed significantly to the image of China in the Netherlands.
In the 1990s, Co de Kruijf completely shifted his work to photography. In addition to travel photography, he increasingly practiced social documentary- and editorial photography. Co de Kruijf currently works for a number of magazines and cultural institutions. He also initiates and leads photographic projects aimed at social inclusion and cohesion in neighbourhoods.
Independent work by Co de Kruijf often relates to human behavior in public space. Privacy and individuality in the public sphere is a recurring theme.
He has recently exhibited works at GalleryWM in Amsterdam. In September 2020 works from the Homo Turisticus-series were on show and last September he showed a 1992-series about the legendary Amsterdam Club iT.
Co de Kruijf lives in Amsterdam with his wife Denise. Together they have two children.
Co de Kruijf is represented by Hollandse Hoogte/ANP.