First Contact by Marcel van der Vlugt

Sunday, April 22, 2018 — Sunday, June 03, 2018

MPV Gallery is proud to present it’s first exhibition by Marcel van der Vlugt – First Contact – opening the 22nd of April.

With a selection of work from his BUDS series – a series with portraits of flowers that Van der Vlugt started in 1990 – to his latest Anotherland series, the exhibition offers an intimate abstract of Van der Vlug’s quest for beauty with photography as his preferred medium.

22/04/2018 – 03/05/2018

Curated by Majke Hüsstege Projects


“I started taking portraits of flowers back in the summer of 1990. Whether I received these anthuriums as a present or that I gave them to my girlfriend myself, I don’t remember. Anyway, these flowers had been sitting in a vase for a couple of weeks and normally one would have thrown them away. But these funny phallic flowers were drying up, morphing and discolouring and were more beautiful than ever. So one Sunday morning, I set up my 8×10” camera, opened the large studio door and let the daylight fill the room and I began to portray the flowers on Polaroid. Since then I would call it my Sunday morning therapy. But as I photographed more and more flowers I became intruiged by their abstraction and symbolic meaning. And so the photographs changed with the flowers until there was no more film left.”
– Marcel van der Vlugt, July 2014 –


Marcel van der Vlugt believes that one does not have to travel far to face undisrupted nature beauty. ‘The most exotic locations are around the corner’ is a phrase he refers to in this project, thus he has created his own utopia Anotherland. Van der Vlugt challenges the definition of paradise, tribalism, and the authenticity of its photographic records. The outcome of Van der Vlugt’s research is a new reality in a series of landscapes, portraits and still lifes. All of the images of Anotherland are staged in Van der Vlugt’s home in Amsterdam or in one of the city parks. His characters’ appearances are invented and improvised. A girl nextdoor becomes the pristine beauty from ancient times. He is looking for something we are all longing for; the purity of beauty.