Bik Van der Pol

Social Practice
Artist in Residence, 2018

Artist Statement

Since 1995, Liesbeth Bik and Jos van der Pol work as Bik Van der Pol.

Through their practice Bik Van der Pol aims to articulate and understand how art can produce a public sphere and space for speculation and imagination. Their work follows from research of how to activate situations to create a platform for various kinds of communicative activities.

Bik Van der Pol’s mode of working consists of setting up the conditions for encounter, where they develop a process of working that allows for continuous reconfigurations of places, histories, and publics.

Their practice is site-specific and collaborative, with dialogue as a mode of transfer, a “passing through”, understood in its etymological meaning of “a speech across or between two or more people, out of which may emerge new understandings. It is temporal, and implies action and the development of new forms of discourse.

While At Headlands

We are working on a new project in the context of Public Knowledge in collaboration with SFMOMA and the Public Libraries’ network. Entitled Take Part, this project will consider the implications of global capitalism on the citizens’ loss of public rights, struggles over the definition of democracy, and the change of communities and shared space. Take Part proposes to think aloud considering that what makes a city. As point of departure we link the Gold Rush to todays’ goldmine: information and the abundant growth of data with human investment of private data and time as its main accelerator. The city, drastically influenced by these developments, acts as venue and site of exploration, while the project will be shaped through research and dialogue in collaboration with citizens through “live action modeling,” making and speaking as a form of continuous performance.

Selected Videos