Capital A: a new yearly visual arts festival in Amsterdam

Amsterdam offers a unique concentration of top artist residences, renowned art organizations and museums, and combines this with a fierce underground scene. Capital A is a new initiative that aims to open up the city’s contemporary art scene to an (inter)national audience. The climax of the initiative is the yearly 3 Days of A. Non-fiction is responsible for the programme and the (online) communication.

 Capital A will be omnipresent (image taken from brand concept Capital A © Vandejong, 29 juli 2011)

The first 3 Days of A takes place from 25–27 November 2011, at various locations throughout the city, all in walking distance. The the website ( currently being developed and will include an extensive (visual) arts agenda. Throughout the year this website is also the central meeting place for everyone with an interest in contemporary art.

3 Days of A takes place simultaneously with the Open Studios of artists at the Rijksakademie and De Ateliers, as an integral part of the weekend. Prominent Amsterdam galleries, art institutions and museums present themselves for an entire weekend with exhibitions, artist performances and lectures of well known artists and curators, all in an exciting and unconventional way.

Capital A is a joint initiative of the Rijksakademie, Gallery Fons Welters and Gallery Martin van Zomeren and three Dutch private collectors. Fons Hof, co-founder of the international contemporary art fair Art Rotterdam has been appointed director and creative communications agency Vandejong will develop the on- and offline campaign that will play with the letter ‘A’.

© Vandejong

Participants are a.o.: artists, De Rijksakademie, De Ateliers, Stedelijk Museum, Foam, Manifesta, De Appel, Smart Project Space, NIMK, Kunstverein, Salon/Magazijn, Galerie Fons Welters, Galerie Paul Andriesse, Diana Stigter, GRIMM Gallery, Slewe, Van Zoetendaal, Jeanine Hofland Contemporary Art, Ron Mandos, Gerhard Hofland, Vous Etes Ici, Van Krimpen, Juliette Jongma, Annet Gelink Gallery, Martin van Zomeren.

The central hub of this weekend is Tommy Hilfiger’s People’s Place at the Stadhouderskade. On show an exceedingly strong programme, with the highlights of Amsterdam art. The theme is: The Future of Art. Curators of this programme are the founders of Non-fiction Michiel van Iersel and Juha van ‘t Zelfde.

The complete program will be launched here in September 2011.

© Vandejong

By Michiel — Posted August 8, 2011 — 3,402 Comments

Moderating panel discussion ‘What’s next?’ at Foam Amsterdam


On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of Foam, the innovative photography museum in Amsterdam, Non-fiction’s Michiel van Iersel moderated a lively panel discussion on ‘the ideal art (photography) institution’, critically re-examining the pillars of present-day museums: the building, the collection, the curator and the role of artists and new communication tools.

The panel consisted of Charlotte Cotton, former LACMA and V&A curator and now creative director of the National Media Museum in London, and the New York-based artist Lisa Oppenheim. The discussion focused on the shifting role of art and photography museums vis-a-vis a rapidly changing medium and an increasing institutional critique.

The panel discussion was part of the What’s Next? expert meeting, a one-day symposium on March 19 bringing together international professionals from the area of photography and many related fields, including a.o. artists like Constant Dullaart and Thomas Ruff, PixelPress director Fred Ritchin (read his contribution here), Wallpaper magazine’s editor in chief Tony Chambers and trend watcher Lidewij Edelkoort.

Attendance was by invitation only, but highlights from the meeting will be posted on this special website.


What’s next?

For Foam Amsterdam their 10th anniversary offers an opportunity to reflect, not about the past, but about the future of photography. To do this they have asked themselves the question: ‘What’s Next?’. In short, ‘What’s Next?’ is about the future of a medium and of a society in transition.

It is about far more than ‘just’ the future of photography. It is also about the future of a society dictated by visual media, of a society in which people primarily communicate with technological tools that have been developed and made into consumer products with incredible speed.

During the course of 2011 a series of activities involving a variety of experts will address the question, ‘What’s Next?’.

Visit Foam’s ‘What’s Next?’ website.


By Michiel — Posted March 20, 2011 — 2,477 Comments

Can we still trust you?

How can banks, museums, governments and other institutions regain a sense of trust from the public? That is the question that lies at the heart of an ambitious project titled ‘Trustville‘.

Initiated by communication agency Vandejong and its idiosyncratic founder and namesake Pjotr de Jong, Trustville encompasses a series of themed expert meetings focusing on new and innovative ways to overcome the credibility crisis that paralyzes our economic and political system.

Non-fiction was asked to join the editorial board of this interdisciplinary research project and the forthcoming book, which will be published by Valiz later this year. Surrounded by professionals from totally different backgrounds, including an advisor to the World Bank and a young labor union leader, we found ourselves rather optimistic about the current state of affairs and future perspectives.

OK, we don’t wanna downplay the impact of wrongdoers like “Bernie“, the Bushes and Kanye, but luckily we meet more and more trustworthy people and organizations everyday. Like the man who runs Amsterdam and the lady we recently heared talking about the ‘Just City‘, or the museum that opened on time and within budget and the bank who helped us setting up De Verdieping.

Being an office for collaborative actions, co-created visions and crowdsourced sollutions, we feel the obligation to provide sufficient counterweight to the skepticism that dominates the news headlines and the hearts and minds op people nowadays.

Gated communities, fenced off companies and Firewalls.. You don’t want to go down that road, because you might end up in Lars von Trier‘s hellish Dogville. Or even worse, the city of Trussville, Alabama or better know as ‘The Gateway to Happy Living‘. What a difference one letter can make..

Instead of a small dead-end town we prefer a place where people still communicate and connect with one another, whether it’s Amsterdam, Twitteropolis, Wikicity, Farmville or our own interpretation of Niketown. So we don’t have to travel very far to reach Trustville. We just have to help other people opening up their eyes, and it’s right there in front of us.

We’ll keep you updated on our journey into the known..

Still taken from Dogville (2003), directed by Lars von Trier

By Michiel — Posted January 19, 2010 — 5,988 Comments