22 March 2020 till 22 March 2020

Jeroen Eisinga

The Social Ladder

Jeroen Eisinga, De maatschappelijke ladder (still), 1996-2019


23 November 2019 to 22 March 2020

‘Meticulous, varied and intense work of great quality. Work that stays with you’: the glowing assessment in the jury report for the Ouborg Prize 2019. They refer to the oeuvre of artist Jeroen Eisinga, who on Friday 22 November will receive The Hague’s art prize which is awarded jointly by the city council, Kunstmuseum Den Haag and Stroom Den Haag. At the same time, an exhibition of Eisinga’s work entitled The Social Ladder will open and a publication of the same name will be launched at Kunstmuseum Den Haag.

Artist Jeroen Eisinga (b. 1966) is ambitious, not easily satisfied and is constantly pushing boundaries. In his now iconic film Springtime (2011) he was covered in a swarm of around 150,000 bees. Every one of his productions is highly labour-intensive. His body of work is not large, therefore, but it is impressive nonetheless. His films have been shown at international festivals and arts venues, and now form part of a number of museum and private collections.

The Social Ladder

Jeroen Eisinga – The Social Ladder in Kunstmuseum Den Haag’s Projects Gallery, Eisinga will combine five films from the 1990s: 40-44-PG (1993), Grauzone (1995), The Most Important Moment of My Life (1995), Night Porter (1993) and The Social Ladder (1996 - 2019). This last film, from which the title of both the exhibition and the publication are taken, has never been screened publicly before. Besides the five films, visitors will also be given a glimpse of the research and preparations that are part of Eisinga’s making process. Sketchbooks containing 25 years of preparatory research will be on display. Some of them are like artworks in themselves.


The prize includes the book Jeroen Eisinga – The Social Ladder (ISBN/EAN: 9789073799820), published by Stroom Den Haag. ‘It has turned out to be a scintillating book full of ideas and discoveries’, say Eisinga. ‘Sketches, ideas, thoughts, reflections, designs for projects, completed projects, failed projects and work never previously shown. I’ve combined them with texts that should be seen as underlying thoughts, explorations, independent and existing in their own right, rather than explanations of the visual work.’


About the Ouborg Prize

The Ouborg Prize, named after Hague artist Piet Ouborg (1893-1956), is The Hague’s visual art award. It is the city’s way of showing its pride in and appreciation of the standard, achievements, quality and wider importance of the nominees and their work, the contribution they make to the artistic climate in The Hague, and their role in highlighting this aspect of the city both nationally and internationally. Consisting of a 10,000 euro prize, an exhibition at Kunstmuseum Den Haag and a publication by Stroom Den Haag, the Ouborg Prize is awarded at most every two years, and at least every four. The previous winners were Christie van der Haak (2015), Marcel van Eeden (2013), André Kruysen (2011), Justin Bennett (2009), Zeger Reyers (2007), Ben van Os (2005), Hans van der Pennen (2003), Vojta Dukàt (2001), Philip Akkerman (1999), Auke de Vries (1997), Martin Rous (1996), Dick Raaijmakers (1995), Tomas Rajlich (1994), Lotti van der Gaag (1993), Gerard Fieret (1992), Wil Bouthoorn (1991) and Frans Zwartjes (1990).

Ouborg Prize 2019 jury

Janneke Hendriks (graphic designer/Studio Janneke Hendriks), Christie van der Haak (previous winner, artist), Frits Dijcks (artist/Topp & Dubio/ism project space/editor-in-chief of Jegens & Tevens), Benno Tempel (director of Kunstmuseum Den Haag) and Arno van Roosmalen (chair and director of Stroom Den Haag).

The Ouborg Prize is a collaboration between The Hague City Council, Kunstmuseum Den Haag, Stroom Den Haag and EYE Filmmuseum Amsterdam.