Sylvie Zijlmans and Hewald Jongenelis invited ten friends to eat with them in a meadow on ten consecutive days. Each day they moved their friends, the tables and the food closer to the horizon. They assembled the photographs of the ten meals to create a single image of a large feast. ‘Ten to One’ was displayed in the museum from 28 February 2009.
Each of their friends appears ten times in the photograph, each time in a different outfit. Zijlmans and Jongenelis had the clothes made by a hundred different tailors in Beijing, not only because this made the hundred suits more affordable but also to stress that the real world is at least ten times larger than that of the friends in the meadow. Every one of us in the West is in reality connected to perhaps thousands of people in China, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and India through the products with which we fill their lives.
By being multiplied by ten, each person in the photograph has been transformed into an anonymous figure, but the hundred tailors have all been given an identity. Zijlmans and Jongenelis travelled to Beijing to meet all the participating tailors. The project includes a magazine with extensive documentation on the tailors, their workshops and working methods, and an accompanying text by Dirk van Weelden.
The exhibition and publication have been made possible by The Netherlands Foundation for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture (project grant) and H+F Patronage (exhibition and publication).