My recent trip to Amsterdam has been extremely insightful. The publication community in thriving as a number of the top magazines have studios baed in the city or have launched an issue there.
Prominent places I visited include Lambiek, Stedelijk museum and the MacGuffin Magazine Studios. I also made time for the De Hortus botanical gardens, canal boats and the sex museum.
Lambiek is the world's oldest comic book and sequential art shop, founded in 1968. It has a reputably huge collection of world renowned comics including some of the rarest and most lucrative pieces of work. The shop is fairly small but is packed to the brims with artwork and books, top floor storing dutch and bottom floor english.
Among the piles, i found 'the park bench' by artist Chaboute. Its a thick comic that tells a tale of a park bench's role in some many different stories, hinting at the effects with hostile architecture, homelessness, struggles with illness, completing a full cycle by starting and finishing the narrative with the same kids that aged, fell in love, married, became parents and repurposed the bench for themselves. A heartwarming story that offers more the more times you read through.
The next post will explain more about my time with MacGuffin Magazine creator's Kirsten Algera and Ernst Van der Hoevan, but I can say their studio is lush and they're both lovely.
Stedelijk Museum didn't impress me, their gift shop and marketing design did and it was a beautiful building and surrounding area in the sun but the art was... meh. I appreciate the effort under the circumstances of a pressured and limited lifestyle under the rule of a dictator but the art wasn't to my liking, it wasn't refined conceptually enough, the highlights were the propaganda posters giving off a very bauhaus, bold, soviet tone.
However, the Stedelijk museum had a wealth of interesting, but straight, thick, linear type. AN obvious link between the more official uses of type in Amsterdam and playful type in the UK.