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Domestic Strangers
What do a tube of paint and a box of concrete separators have in common? Concrete separators and Chinese soupspoons? Soupspoons and coffee cups? Coffee cups and plastic bath mats? Bath mats and deep-frying sieves? Sieves and clay? Clay and paint?
They are all materials that an artist can use to create the illusion of life. Or better said: they are the materials that Tanja Smeets uses for sculptures that seem to grow and appear to move. All except paint, which she stopped using when she left art school in Arnhem.
She prefers to paint with materials that already have the right colour and to create texture by combing individual 'dabs' (spoons, cups etc.) in such a way that they form a new entity. Her canvas is often an ordinary or even unsightly piece of reality: the stairwell in an office building, the edge of a new housing development, the wall of a recycling centre.
- Els Hoek in Domestic Strangers, published 2013 (translation: Gerard Forde)

Uncontrollable growth processes
Tanja Smeets chooses her materials on the basis of colour, structure and shape. She connects or groups these materials into large organic structures that seem to be the result of a natural growth process: they infiltrate the environment in which they find themselves and suggest they have always been there. The tension that arises between this matter-of-fact presence on the one hand and the imminent danger of a growing organism on the other, is important in the work of Tanja Smeets.


Liquid Garden 2, Stadsmuseum Woerden (NL), 2017
White Landscape, Central China International Ceramics Biennale, 2016-2017 White Landscape, Central China International Ceramics Biennale, 2016-2017
Nebula and the Soft Machine, TextielMuseum, Tilburg (NL), 2016 Nebula and the Soft Machine, TextielMuseum, Tilburg (NL), 2016 Nebula and the Soft Machine, TextielMuseum, Tilburg (NL), 2016
From Far Down, kfHeinfonds Utrecht (NL), 2015 Between the Walls, SALON/Paris, D'Days, Paris (Fr), 2015 UtrechtDownUnder, former prison Wolvenplein Utrecht (NL), 2015
Untitled, MIJ Museum IJsselstein (NL), 2014 Mimicry, Landgoed Anningahof Zwolle (NL), 2014 Biennale Gelderland, Museum Het Valkhof Nijmegen (NL), 2014
Mimicry, group exhibition 'Autour du Jardin', Caen (France), 2013 All Systems Melt Down, Domestic Strangers, Boymans Rotterdam (NL), 2013 and in DSM Art Collection, Heerlen (NL), 2016 Red Landscape, Domestic Strangers, Boymans Rotterdam (NL), 2013 Black Sun, Domestic Strangers, Boymans Rotterdam (NL), 2013 Silent Runner, Domestic Strangers, Boymans Rotterdam (NL), 2013
Untitled, group exhibition 'Het Gebouw', Museum Oud Amelisweerd (NL), 2012
Untitled, Groningen (NL), 2011 Residency at European Ceramic Workcentre, Den Bosch (NL), 2011
Irreversibility, Icheon Museum, South Korea, 2011 Residency at European Ceramic Workcentre, Den Bosch (NL), 2011 Korea International Ceramics Biennale, Sundaymorning Ceramics, 2011; AkzoNobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam (NL), 2015 Untitled, South Korea International CeraMIX Competition, 2011
Residency at European Ceramic Workcentre, Den Bosch (NL), 2011
Journey Continued, Museum of Arts and Design MAD, New York, 2010
Unbridled Pillar, Manhattan NY, 2009 UNBRIDLED, Museum Gouda (NL), 2009/2010 UNBRIDLED, Museum Gouda (NL), 2009/2010
U Home, with Roland Sohier, Utrecht (NL), 2008 DAAR, Krabbedans, cultural heritage Bergeijk (NL), 2008
Untitled, Art Amsterdam, by Gist Gallery (NL), 2007 Untitled, 2007
Untitled, Gist Gallery, Brummen (NL), 2006 Untitled, Woeker, Art Center VHDG, Leeuwarden (NL), 2006
Untitled, CBK Groningen (NL), Salon Prinsenhof, Monumentendag 2006 Fatal flowers, CBK Groningen (NL), Salon Prinsenhof, Monumentendag 2006

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Work from previous years (1995-2005) following soon!
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EXHIBITIONS
White Landscape, Central China International Ceramics Biennale, Museum Henan, Zhengzhou, China, December 2016 - March 2017
Nebula and the Soft Machine, Fringes of Beauty, TextielMuseum, Tilburg (NL), 03/12/2016 - 28/05/2017
Going Soft, TextielMuseum, Tilburg (NL), December 2016
UtrechtDownUnder (group exhibition), former prison Wolvenplein Utrecht (NL), 2015
Between the Walls, SALON/Paris, D'Days (group exhibition), Paris (Fr), 2015
Untitled, Ongekend kant (group exhibition), MIJ Museum IJsselstein (NL), 2014
Mimicry (group exhibition), Landgoed Anningahof Zwolle (NL), 2014
Art Miami, USA, 2014
Untitled, Biënnale Gelderland (group exhibition), Museum Het Valkhof Nijmegen (NL), 2014
Salon Dantel, Istanbul, Turkey, 2014
Domestic Strangers, Intervention #22, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen Rotterdam (NL), 2013/14
South Korea Gyeonggi International CeraMIX Biennale 2011, group exhibition, Sep-Nov 2011
South Korea International CeraMIX Competition 2011, group exhibition, Sep-Nov 2011
Irreversibility, Icheon Museum, South Korea, 2011
British Ceramics Biennial 2011 Stoke-on-Trent, group exhibition, Sep-Nov 2011
Untitled, concrete spacers, site-specific sculpture, Groningen (NL), group exhibition, October 2011
Dead or Alive, Museum of Arts and Design MAD, New York NYC, April/October 2010
UNBRIDLED, Soloshow, Museum Gouda (NL), December 2009 / March 2010
HOME|LAND 5 Dutch Days NY, Solo @ Dyckman Farmhouse Museum, Manhattan NY, Unbridled Fractals, site-specific sculpture, Nov/Dec 2009
Villa Zebra, De Monsterfabriek: a growing sculpture, Children's Museum Rotterdam (NL), 2009
DAAR, site-specific sculpture, using fabrics from the 'PLOEG', Bergeijk (NL), 2008
U Home, Utrecht (NL), 2008
Twintig beelden, VU Amsterdam Exposorium, group exhibition, 2007
Art Amsterdam, by Gist Gallery, 2007
Niederländisch 3-D, Galerie Petra Nostheide-Eycke (Germany), 2007
Dreamland, Gist Gallery and Kunststichting Diepenheim (NL), 2007
Fatal flowers/Untitled, Prinsenhof Groningen (NL), Monumentendag 2006
Woeker, Art Center VHDG, Leeuwarden (NL), site-specifique sculpture, 2006
Gist Gallery, Brummen (NL) 2006
Material Girls, Van Wijngaarden Gallery, Amsterdam (NL), 2005
Liquid Tangle, Van Wijngaarden Gallery, Amsterdam (NL), 2005
Dragon Skin Tales, CBK Kunstenlab, Deventer (NL), 2004
Fantastic Voyage, solo exhibition, Archipel, Apeldoorn (NL), 2004
Blindgangers en voetzoekers, voormalig Gerechtsgebouw, Utrecht (NL), 2003
Kunstrai Amsterdam, Flatland Gallery (NL), 2003
Art Rotterdam, Not Fair, Flatland Gallery, Utrecht (NL), 2003
Untitled, Protopark, Siegerpark, Amsterdam Art Fund (NL), 2002
Het blauwe uur, curated by H2OME / Henri Rocquas, 2001
Museum Gorinchem (NL), group show, 2001
EAT, solo show, Flatland Gallery, Utrecht (NL), 2000
CBK, Amersfoort (NL), solo exhibition and publication, 1999
Cry Me a Castle, Castle of Rhoon (NL), 1999
Salon, Centraal Museum, Utrecht (NL), 1998
Floating Parts, Begane Grond, Utrecht (NL), 1997
Cross Country, Hooghuis, Arnhem (NL), 1997
DOKU, Künstlerhaus, Dortmund (DE), 1997
Van Nagsael Museum, Rotterdam (NL), 1996
Shaking Patterns, W139, Amsterdam (NL), 1995
De Gele Rijder, Arnhem (NL), 1994
Verborgen verleiders, Extrapool, Nijmegen (NL), 1993
U Recicych Gallery, Praag, 1993
Art Divers, Extrapool, Nijmegen (NL), 1992
Tijdelijk Museum, Paraplufabrieken, Nijmegen (NL), 1991

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