Anne Geene at h3h biënnale in Oosterhout
At the monasteries of de Heilige Driehoek, with the theme ‘Faith’
On view from June 3 until July 16, 2023
At the invitation of the curators Hendrik Driessen and Rebecca Nelemans, 25 artists from the Netherlands and abroad will show works, inspired by the unique location and the rich historical and spiritual traditions. Anne Geene is among the selected artists with her new work made especially for the bienalle, Relics (2023).
Anne Geene is fascinated by the deep symbolic meanings that have been attributed to plants throughout history. In an effort to capture that significance, she has been collecting blades of grass during her daily walks in The Hague. These blades are then carefully encased in cast resin and arranged in a rhythmic composition as part of a triptych. The curved shape of the resin casts reminds her of the glass tubes used to hold and venerate fragments of religious relics, such as splinters from the cross or strands of a saint’s hair.
In front of a window, Anne displays photos that have been immersed in spirits using goblets. She reflects on the fact that photography has seldom played a role within the context of the church. In an intriguing twist reminiscent of the miracle of Veronica’s veil, the image of simple stones printed on photo paper detaches and appears to float in the liquid like a miniature vision. By combining the tiny bones from owl pellets she discovered in a small courtyard with a cabbage grown on what she considers “holy ground” from the sisters’ vegetable garden, Anne not only explores the blurred boundary between idolatry and genuine worship, but also aesthetically distinguishes the ordinary and seemingly insignificant.