Marie-José Jongerius (De Bilt, 1970) studied photography at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague, and attained her Master’s Degree in Photography at the AKV / St. Joost-Avans Hogeschool in Breda. In New York she worked alongside Dana Lixenberg, and exhibited work in the ADC Gallery and the Riverside Museum in Los Angeles, among others. In addition to autonomous work, she also carries out photographic commissions for the New York Times Magazine, ELLE and Vogue.
Jongerius worked in Los Angeles between 2002 and 2006. In this period she realized the photo project entitled Edges of the Experiment (2011), in which she placed examples of the concretized American dream next to the powerful nature of California. Her photos depict the visible and invisible boundaries that people impose on the surroundings they admire but against which they must also protect themselves. A number of these American landscape photos were on display in the Nederlands Fotomuseum during the exhibition New Topographics in 2011. Lunar Landscapes is a continuation of this type of research into the relationships between humans, the living environment, nature and the sustainability of the created landscape.
Marie-José Jongerius photographed Maasvlakte 2 with the scant amount of nocturnal light available. Her approach issues from the observation that the new, artificial land in the sea is a land without history; it is neither culture nor nature. It is a land without images. In an extremely detailed manner she records what is visible in the meagre (artificial) light. With this, her photography symbolizes the stages in a train of thought, not only about what this new land could become, but also about the images that might offer us a clue to understanding the impossible genius loci of this sand zone.
Maasvlakte 2 Series of Assignments
Since 2007 and in conjunction with the Nederlands Fotomuseum, the Port of Rotterdam and the Foundation for Art and Public Space have issued an annual assignment to a photographer, filmmaker or other visual artist to create work related to the construction of Maasvlakte 2. The assignment is to observe, analyse and interpret the development of this new part of the Netherlands, and to involve the public in their way of looking. Marie-José Jongerius now closes the series. The first stage of Maasvlakte 2 will be completed in 2013. Dorothée Meijer, Marcel van Eeden, Rosa Barba and Erik Wesseloo preceded her and also enjoyed exhibitions in the Nederlands Fotomuseum. The film Somnium (2011), which Rosa Barba made in this framework, is on permanent display in the Film Lounge of the Photographic Museum.