Opening speech by Jaap Bijsterbosch:
Ladies and gentlemen,
Today I want to say something about the man and the photographer Gideon Smit, something about his camera, something about his photography and something about his exhibition. After the words we can drink and celebrate this happy occasion.
Something about Gideon Smit.
He's a man with a mission.
Something about the Minox-camera.
In 1938 Herr Doctor Walter Zap invented the minox. His aim was to construct a still- camera with no bigger size than a cigar. No wonder that untill 1943 about 17.000 of those small machines were produced. This was the ideal camera for spying. You all may know this was a favourite hobby of many people in those days.
The minox is not only very small but also easy to handle. It's not the size, but how to use it.
The negatives, this minox is producing, measure 8 X 11 mm. That's about the size of a quarter of a stamp. And I don't think it's a coincidence that Gideon found this camera in the heritage of his father. This camera was invented especially for him, Gideon. The exhibition today proves it.
Ladies and gentlemen, if you would have expected a glamourous photoshow, you may be dissappointed. Today we see grainy, unsharp, vague, mysterious images. Which of course first of all is a result of the enlargementprocess, but which also has everything to do with the way Gideon is looking at the world.
Something about the photography of Gideon.
For Gideon, ladies and gentlemen, photography is sheer magic. It is a process in which timeless images may occur. It is a strange, uncertain process, one presses a button, one records a situation, a face in the crowd, or in the case of Gideon ones own face. It is also a process full of thrilling excitement, it's never certain what comes out of it.
One day there were negatives & contactsheets of a whole year working and then Gideon started to collect prints. On a certain day he stuck about 500 prints to the wall in his studio, and the result puzzled him.
Imagine, 500 prints from a year's work, and at most of the pictures you see your own face.
One thing he knew for sure, he wanted to depict himself and his year in an honest way. Not only sexy, seductive images, but also reflections of darker sides of his character.
Something about the exhibition eye spy.
It's a strange exhibition full of unpolished, raw, grainy pictures. Sometimes
it is pure magical.
Gideon, to me this exhibition is a quest of truth and personal beauty. Truth about yourself in a strange peculiar way. Personal beauty also, not as a popstar, but beauty as an individual in search for the way you are and the way you look at and into the world.
But it's not only that.
We, the public today can not only experience something about you as an artist and a human being, but we can also learn something about ourselves and our motives in life by watching your photo's.
So let's drink to that, now the exhibition is officially open.