what house parties should look like

By 30/10/2009photography

When house parties were still considered a new and exciting phenomenon by the museum world in the Netherlands (the famous “low culture”!), I heard that the Kunsthal in Rotterdam was planning an exhibition about this subject (doubtlessly with a new, young public in mind). So I made an appointment with the then manager/photography curator, who said he was very interested. I went to Rotterdam, taking a selection of my house parties series.  After looking at my series of photographs he seemed a bit puzzled – was it that he wanted this subject in “more contemporary” color I wondered, had he expected a wild kid with speedy eyes and uneasy manners? Or, since this was Rotterdam, a young stoner skinhead photographer from the gabber scene? -.  None of that, after a pause gathering his thoughts, came his verdict: interesting photographs but this is not how I imagine a house party looks(!). My slightly irritated reaction, something like – o, I’m happy I seem to have avoided the clichés then… – did not go down so well. He gave me his card, mumbled something about sending an invitation for the opening, blablah. I left, thinking about how people really only want to see confirmation of what they already know, or more likely think they know…. Why? And should it upset me…no, I couldn’t care less.

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