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A disintegration of the center of power.

Robert Schuurmans Stekhoven

Draftsman, thinker

Ever since his time at the art and design academy (St-Joost Breda) Robert Schuurmans Stekhoven has been concerned with power and control. At the academy he studied publicity and multimedia design. One time (1984) he went to East Germany with the group. The repression that he encountered there, in combination with many books, serves as his source of inspiration. His drawings are broad interpretations of this thematic; some describe the interpersonal relationship between two people and others the relations between two states. His goal is to visualize the power structures and forces at play.

“Strangely enough I discovered that power can hardly be found in prehistoric times; up until the Neolithic, when the first cities (Uruk) appeared in Mesopotamia. The exercise of power on others is almost certainly a cultural phenomenon, as is property.”

“There also is a personal element to my fascination with power, but I won't go into that too much. All I can say is that I see that some people have a lot of influence over others, intimidate them. In reverse, a group can intimidate a loner and see that he adapts.”

“I am now trying to put all these matters on paper in a kind of abstract play of forces. From the response and personal messages I receive, I notice that it sometimes deeply affects people because they themselves have had parents with narcissistic or psychopathic traits (these are often leaders or people who want power). You can also look at it from physics, but it does not really correspond with reality. I work with simple drawing tools. No computer or photos.

I get to work with a pencil, ballpoint pen, pen or colored pencil. I draw everything out of my head; as much as possible at least, because then I will get to the essence much faster.

"The drawing can be ambiguous because it doesn't have to communicate unambiguously like my design works. As far as I am concerned the viewer can fill in the story himself, as far as I am concerned. I often get the comment that my work is philosophical. I agree with that.”

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Curriculum Vitae


Academy for art and design St. Joost, Breda (Netherlands) 1981-1986

2021: 'Huidhonger' (Skin hunger) Edition 3, April 2, 2021.
2021: 'Everything is possible': Publieke Werken 2021'. Catalogus.

2022: Rozenburgse Courant, november 3. 'Robert visualiseert macht' in BiblioArt. 

2022: Algemeen Dagblad, December 23. Fleur Bergman 'Robert woont in een oude sporthal'. 

2021: Concert in New York (Brooklyn) on August 30, 2021. Three drawings of Robert are the inspiration for a piece that the American composer and pianist Margin Alexander performed that day.


2018: Exhibition in 'De Rozet', Rozenburg-Rotterdam (NL)
2019: 'Kunst Verbindt', Rozenburg-Rotterdam (NL)
2019: Artspace: Neck of the Woods, Rotterdam (NL). 3th & 5th Intervention Taskscaping Alterism (groupexhibition).
2020: De Aanschouw, Rotterdam (NL). Installation mixed media: Monument for the dismissed workers (solo exhibition).
2020: 'Kunst Verbindt 2021' (group exhibition), Rozenburg-Rotterdam (NL).
2021: 'Publieke Werken' (Public Works) in the Maastunnel in Rotterdam and on the Maasboulevard in the city, from 1 July to 1 August 2021.
2021: ’Diversiteity in Art’. Exposition of Kunstenaarscollectief Karmijn (group exhibition), from 2 july to 4 july during Art Rotterdam.
2021: Kunstroute Kralingen/Crooswijk (Rotterdam). Participant group exhibition 2 & 3 october.
2021: 'Kunst verbindt 2021' (Groupexhibition0. Rozenburg-Rotterdam. Group exhibition.
2022: 'ZERO ZERO II (group exhibition). Eye Love You Artspace, Rotterdam. From march 5 to april 15.

2022: 'Art at the Bouwhuis' (group exhibition). 15 may until mid-August. Het Bouwhuis
Kleine Overstraat 17, Deventer (🇳🇱)

2022: Event/exhibition 'Lines and dots' Eye love you Artspace, Rotterdam. As artist in action during this event.

2022: Group exhibition 'Kunst verbindt', Rozenburg-Rotterdam.

2022: Solo exhibition 'BilblioArt', Bibliotheek Rozenburg. November 12 - December 12. 

2023: Contemporary Art Gallery Har Hensgens, Vlaardingen (NL). February 4 - March 25, 2023. 'Duo exhibition of Daniella Wesseling & Robert Schuurmans Stekhoven'.​

Ongoing exhibitions

2022-2023: Exhibition: 'ZERO II' (group exhibition), Gallery Bouwhuis Deventer.

New exhibitions
2023: open studios 'South Explorer', Heer Danielstudios, 21-22 March South Rotterdam. Guest artist in group exhibition. 

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