Liesbeth Bik and Jos Van der Pol live and work in Rotterdam. They have been working together as Bik Van der Pol since 1995, exhibiting in numerous art institutions and biennials and realizing site-specific commissioned projects. With their projects, they aim to articulate and understand how art can produce a public sphere and space for imagination, and how publics are formed and come together. Their mode of working consists of setting up the conditions for encounter to develop a process that allows for continuous reconfigurations of places, histories, and publics. Their practice is site-specific and collaborative with dialogue as a mode of transfer.
Facts on te Ground, 2009
‘Facts on the ground’ depicts fragments from the process of land reclamation and establishment of the Maasvlakte-2 terminal (MV2) in the port of Rotterdam back in 2009. The new land is created by continuously spraying sand from trailing suction hopper dredgers, which suck up huge amounts of material from the seabed. The sand is built up on the mainland, withdrawn from the dynamics of the tidal change and becomes the material basis for economic growth and the com- petitiveness of the overseas port. The video documents the graphic style of the excavators and examines the similarities between the creation of a work of art and the production of new land. What role does poetic aesthetics play in developing such a project? And how does this poetics influence the design and technology of territorial and urban expansion?