For the theatrical exhibition The Floor is Lava, artist duo Sander Breure and Witte van Hulzen will populate Marres with sculptures and molded portraits of people in everyday environments. Made from different materials, clay, cloth, wood, the figures have expressive faces, but are otherwise sketchily composed with stick legs, half torso’s and loosely hanging pieces of cloth.The faces seem mask-like, unrelated to the bodies that support them. They lean against a wall, sit on makeshift chairs, queue at a ticket office, or wait on a platform for a train to arrive at the station.They are actors in search of a play, as much as they are compositions of identity, that fictional moment of stasis in a world that is constantly on the move. The premise here is that people always play a role, different in every situation, with specific character traits and body language.

The title derives from a children’s game in which on command the players immediately have to get their feet off the floor and freeze in a certain position, as if they have been turned into statues.The liquid floor in the game suggests the added meaning of a world that is beyond our control, of shared values that are dissipating, and a future that has become uncertain. The figures inhabit the stage that is left when all that is solid has melted into air.

Director Valentijn Byvanck interviewed the artists prior to the exhibition: Interview Sander Breure & Witte van Hulzen

Next to the exhibition, the joined publication named On Gestures of Doing Nothing made by Sander Breure & Witte van Hulzen is expected to come out the end of August.

Immersive exhibitions
The Floor is Lava 
is part of the sequence of immersive exhibitions at Marres, where artists are invited to not just exhibit an existing piece in one of the rooms, but rather to transform the entire house into in installation of their work. Other exhibitions in this sequence are Levi van Veluw: The Relativity of Matter (2014-15), The Painted Bird (2016) en Dreaming Awake (2018).

Sander Breure and Witte van Hulzen both live and work in Amsterdam. Breure graduated from the Royal Conservatory, The Hague, and Van Hulzen graduated from ArtEZ in Arnhem. Their multidisciplinary work is based on research about body language and its interpretation. They are represented by tegenboschvanvreden, Amsterdam.

Thanks to

The Floor is Lava is made possible with financial support by Fonds 21, BankGiro Loterij Fonds and the Mondriaan Fund.
Many private givers contributed to the project through an intensive crowdfunding campaign organised together with Voordekunst.

Marres receives structural support from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, the Municipality of Maastricht and the Province of Limburg.