Johannes Bosgra ⎸ The Netherlands
My name is Johannes Bosgra, and I’m a Dutch visual artist working in photography, video, and contemporary classical music.
I create video installations depicting minimalist seascapes, trees, and other natural forms, and combining classical music. Colour is important in my work; I explore hues, shades, and tones in a monochromatic palette to create my environments. My work is often projected at live concerts.
These works have been exhibited and performed internationally, notably at Shanghai Centre of Photography, Museum Voorlinden in Wassenaar (NL), and the Concert Hall De Doelen in Rotterdam, among others.
Trees by Bosgra, 2019
Today, I want to introduce you to my series Trees by Bosgra. Produced in 2019, the series consists of photographs of monumental trees reflected in the water or taking a lead role in idyllic landscaped gardens. My ancestors have grown these trees in the family tree nursery in the North of the Netherlands since 1700 when they were employed by the royal family. We know exactly when and where hundreds of these trees are, thanks to our leather-bound family archives that have a record of them since 1861.
The minimalist compositions in the photographs employ a monochromatic colour palette to create a tranquil atmosphere. Some of the photographs are printed on acrylic glass with a pigment print behind it, to let the viewer experience the layers of time and the landscape. Others are printed on metallic gold or rag art paper.
Image: Lindes, silver linden and Dutch linden tree 1934, Prinsentuin, Leeuwarden, pigment print on Hahnemühle rag metallic, 160 x 120 cm, edition 1/3
Trees by Bosgra evokes my happiest childhood memories of escaping into my dreamworld in my ancestral home's garden, protected by the trees grown by my forefather Tiete Bosgra (1794-1875).
In 2020, I created a video work based on my photography series 'Trees by Bosgra' for composer Philip Glass and pianist Feico Deutekom.
Moving synchronously with Glass' piece Distant Figure, I aim to instil a sense of respect and awe for these ancient organisms that give so much more to the world than they take. We can learn to be great forefathers for our children and be enriching to the world, just as my forefathers did by planting all these trees.
The final work was projected in De Melkweg and De Meervaart concert halls in Amsterdam. By making the musical and visual language work together, I created an immersive audiovisual experience for the audience.
Please follow me on Instagram to see the development of my projects. On my website, you can find videos and more images and texts of these projects: www.johannesbosgra.com If you are interested in my work, a studio visit or collaborations, please contact me via [email protected].