Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy - Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, 1019 BN, Netherlands

Malu Halasa


Posted on 12/12/2013 by mylene

‘There’s a lot of high design here, I always feel like I’m in a design museum’, Halasa starts, ‘only it’s more populist than that, it’s in operation. You can admire the materials and the aesthetic, but you can also jump on it. This is what design and sculpture are about; we should have a physical relationship with them. All the creativity that has gone into the building has made it a very warm space for artists and writers. I find it’s very easy to work in the Lloyd.

The first room I ever stayed in, there was a shower in the middle of the room. It was fantastic. What a shock to the system! What a shock to the dictatorship of living arrangements! It’s very bold and it makes me look forward to walk into any room in the Lloyd.

She pauses to greet fellow Prince Claus Fund guests, Lebanese filmmaker Jowe Harfouche and Palestinian fashion designer Kamel Ahmed.

Instead of talking about herself, she prefers that I give her a quick view of some of the exhibition rooms – part of the Upstream show ‘A Decade Upstream; Only Dead Fish Go With The Flow’. She immediately agrees with the statement in the single screen animation from their Third World series‘Los Andes’ of , ‘León & Cociña: ´The time of Europe is over´. ‘Perhaps we don’t as yet realise that Europe is definitely on the decline’, she comments, and smiles at the display of meat, in Maartje Korstanje’s ceramic dangling from an attic beam and in David Haines’ single channel video ‘Big Mac vs. The Honeymonster’, ‘so British the obsession with meat and the use of music’. Marc Bijl’s room installation than is too gothic for her taste,
Once back in London where she lives, she will be finishing a new book with co-editors/co-curators Aram Tahhan and Nawara Mahfoud, Syria Speaks: Art and Culture from the Frontline, an anthology of art and writing from the Syrian uprising. It is due out in June 2014.