I have been the care taker of Bruin Parry since Bruin is a little baby. Bruin is now a talented painter and photographer, but he also has Down Syndrome. Already our whole life we are collaborating, what for me feels really logic, but in the art world it's not so common that someone who is considered an ‘outsider artist’ like Bruin collaborates with a so called ‘insider artist’ like myself.
Bruin in a suit he made together with Jan
Bruin in his Bruin Jackson suit
Throughout Bruin I came in contact with different ateliers where artists such as Bruin Parry produce their work. I was amazed about the level of diversity and craftsmanship Bruin and his colleagues showed in their work. Unfortunately these works almost never leave the world of Outsider Art, even though is has such potential to respond to a much bigger and younger audience.
For me that was the reason to start a foundation, calles Stichting Captain Hoek, in which we want to connect the world of Outsider art with the regular creative industry/ art world. The foundation believes there is a dominant system within the cultural sector that has a strict hierarchy which determines who is allowed to participate. This results in a small group of mostly artists and creatives that follow certain guidelines within their discipline (for instance, the completion of an official art academy) that are considered a place in musea or found eligible for funding. The foundation is committed to break cultural conventions through projects that connect insider and outsider creatives.
Visting Johan Vanderschelden in Werkplaats Zandberg in Belgium
Picture of Jan of Duran Lantink and Casper from theatre group Lebel for Outsiderwear
Picture of Jan of Duran Lantink and Fran from theatre group Lebel for Outsiderwear
The first project the foundation is setting up is called Outsiderwear in which we connect twelve outsider artists with twelve designers and artist who are considered ‘insiders’ but are at the same time also a bit outsiders theirselves. Together different combinations of artists will make clothes under the cooperative name Outsiderwear.
Jan Hoek / Bruin Parry - underwears
For this project me and Bruin are working on our own underwear line. And for this project i also will photograph all participants in a way that it becomes completely unclear who is the insider and who is the outsider and that we just see people that are maybe a little bit different, but mainly very cool. Bruin decided that he didn’t want to work longer in a atelier with only other outsider artists, and now he is working 4 days a week in my studio. He works on his own practice but we also collaborate a lot.
Bruin and Jan presenting their underwear at the Outsiderwear Festival fashion in Melkweg 2021
And now we also started our own project space / art gallery, called: Outsiderland. In this space we try to connect the world of so called “outsider” artists with the regular art world. We do that by connecting artists from both worlds and also fund and guide their collaboration proces. Next to that we make exhibitions where artists from both worlds are shown equally next to eachother. The space can be found in Sexyland World in Amsterdam-North.
In the space there is always a host who can learn u more about the exhibition, the space and our ideology. Also the hosts are a mix of people with and without disability, homeless background: almost everyone can works with us, the only thing that is certain is that u always have a truly unique and inspiring person in front of u.
Learn more at www.outsiderland.nl
This is how Outsiderland looks like. We are open 5 days a week and also in the evenings, and we have around 10 shows a year.