...roads no longer merely lead to places; they are places...
The photobooks of Theo Baart
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The village of Nagele in the Noordoostpolder is a striking example of postwar planning in the Netherlands: a new village on new land. The village was intended for agricultural labourers and was designed and built in a single grand gesture by architects such as Aldo van Eyck, Gerrit Rietveld and Mien Ruys.
NAI Ontwerpen voor Nagele
Nagele Leven in het vierkant
Theo Baart (Amsterdam 1957) studied at the photography department of the Gerrit Rietveld Art school in Amsterdam. Questions of development reflect our culture in a way that is so visual that it can force itself upon a photographer. The permanent friction in Dutch culture between the urge to control the processes of change and the usually rather uncompromising or surprising practice has become his point of reference. He tries to make his work enter into dialogue with other disciplines, such as environmental planning.
From: Documentary Now! Contemporary strategies in photography, film and the visual arts (NAi publishers, 2005)
Planning sketch by Gerrit Rietveld in M.R. Radermacher Schorer’s Album Amicorum
The development of the Noordoostpolder – the piece of land that had been reclaimed from the sea in 1942 – began in 1945. Several architects were asked to draft a design for the small town of Nagele. This sketch by Gerrit Rietveld in the Album Amicorum of René Radermacher Schorer was never carried out.
Baarts foto's laten het Nederland van nu zien zoals wij dat allemaal kennen, maar zijn door hun schijnbaar achteloze alledaagsheid bijzonder confronterend. Baart houdt ons een spiegel voor. In het werk van de fotograaf Theo Baart staat veelal de verstedelijking van het platteland centraal.