Summer in the museum and in the harbour
June 2011

Helly Oestreicher – Small Works

This summer Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is exhibiting a selection of small works by the artist Helly Oestreicher. The exhibition coincides with the publication of the book ‘Helly Oestreicher’, which provides an overview of fifty years of her work, with contributions by Marjan Boot, Thimo te Duits, Beppe Kessler and Helly Oestreicher herself.

Head Wind (1994). Ceramic, glass, 40 x 44 x 17 cm. Photo: Thijs Quispel
Head Wind (1994). Ceramic, glass, 40 x 44 x 17 cm. Photo: Thijs Quispel

Helly Oestreicher (1936) was born in Czechoslovakia and grew up in the Netherlands. She graduated with honours from the IvKNO (now the Gerrit Rietveld Academie) in Amsterdam in 1958, where she later taught from 1979 to 1990. Oestreicher has had solo exhibitions in the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, De Beyerd in Breda and the Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam. Helly Oestreicher is one of the generation of Dutch ceramicists that broke with traditional in the 1960s.

The book ‘Helly Oestreicher’
The 206-page book provides a comprehensive overview of Helly Oestreicher’s oeuvre. Oestreicher works with a great variety of materials and techniques, from clay to glass and from photography to the computer, and all are included here. The book contains numerous illustration of her work, including full-page reproductions of ‘Tree’ (1991), ‘Headwind’ (1994) and BB50 (1999).

The volume contains contributions from friends, art experts and the artist herself. Beppe Kessler describes how Helly Oestreicher helped her to look at and describe her own work. Marjan Boot writes about how growing up with the ideals of the Bauhaus influenced Oestreicher’s development and style. Thimo te Duits, curator of design at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, writes: ‘From the beginning of her career Oestreicher has abandoned the trusted values of traditional ceramics and has created sculptures that invite us to experience space.’

The book ‘Helly Oestreicher’ is available from the museum shop, price €40.00, ISBN 978-90-78670-19-3.