Henk Wildschut

solo exhibition

12.05.2022 08.07.2022

A man, tucked inside an orange knitted cloth that is billowing around him like a tent, is walking along a paved road. He is surrounded by fences. Where is he going? Then another image catches your eye: the border, hermetically sealed with barbed wire. The traveller will never be able to cross over. One thing is clear: he headed somewhere, but he is not welcome. Galerie Bart presents Transit by Henk Wildschut (1967, Harderwijk), an exhibition on refugees who often only reach their destinations in their own dreams.

Henk has been photographing the journeys of groups of displaced persons for over fifteen years. In the process, he has always focused on human resilience and the humanity of the anonymous refugee. The iconic images of the temporary gardens for tents in a UN refugee camp or of a church made of cardboard near Calais are well known. While reflecting on this and on the current war situation, Henk makes a comment on this earlier work. Times have changed, but perhaps so has he. Hope has been replaced by despair about an uncertain future. Despite the strength that lies beneath the way these refugees manage to make something out of their situation, their situation itself must not disappear from view. With a selection of well-known, unknown, old and new photos, Henk tells an story of this indetermination. For as long as he has been documenting the camps, there has been no significant change. The waves of migrants form a tide, but the dam walls are high.

The tent camps embody the struggle that refugees find themselves in. They are not where they wanted to be, they cannot stay, but they also cannot go back. They do not know where they will end up, nor how long it will take.

Henk’s images are multi-faceted. Beautiful, aesthetic, raw, yet also confrontational. Because we know exactly what is happening behind the image, under the surface. They are walking through the forests, but also in limbo. The areas where they spend the night are uncertain, as are their futures. Always moving, but never arriving. The man in the orange shroud has a long road ahead of him.

• More information about Henk Wildschut 

• Transit is on view together with DUAL CORPUS by Isabelle Wenzel and Sentient Shapes by Britte Koolen.


09.07.2022 / 15:00 – 18:00: Special Event: Movie Night with Henk Wildschut.

Don’t miss out on our special event! On Saturday July 9 Galerie Bart organizes a movie night with photographer Henk Wildschut. Entrance with RSPV only!

Calais: Welcome to the Jungle is a journalistic project exploring the challenges of migration in the 21st century created by video artist and filmmaker Maaike Engels and Teun Voeten. It is a multi-layered documentary on the squalid refugee camp in Northern France where migrants are desperately trying to cross illegally to the UK. Their documentary was shown on international film festivals in Mexico City and Budapest and was screened at universities world wide to stimulate a debate on migration.

Henk Wildschut, who is currently showing his solo exhibition Transit in the gallery, has invited Maaike Engels to show her documentory and have a discussion about it afterwards. The discussion will focus on the way we look at the film by Maaike Engels and the photographs by Henk Wildschut, and how the perception of a photograph or a film is influenced by the one who makes it, but also by the one who perceives it. The audience is invited to participate as well.

Date: Saturday July 9th

15:00 • Walk-in
15:15 • Film Back Home by Henk Wildschut (5 min)
15:20 • Screening Calais: Welcome to the Jungle (45 min)
16:05 • Talk with Maaike Engels and Henk Wildschut
16:30 • Drinks and bites

Hope to see you then!

Free entry

15.05.2022 / 14:00 – 15:00: Special Event: Artist Talk with Henk Wildschut.

During Amsterdam Art Galerie Bart organizes an artist talk with Henk Wildschut. The work of photographer Henk is characterized by a contemplative and often distant view of the people and situations he photographs. This adds a monumental quality to his photos that invites the viewer to think further about the subject.

In 2005 Henk started a long-term project on (illegal) immigration. Visiting various refugee camps around the world, he became intrigued by the need for domesticity. Small gardens were laid out around the tents and these gardens turned out to be a universal phenomenon, symbols of hope and resilience.
Given the loaded subject, it is not surprising that Henk’s motives have been questioned several times over the years. Because what happens when a photo of a house from a refugee camp is exhibited? And is there a difference between displaying the photo in a museum and displaying the photo in a commercial gallery? Henk will discuss this topic with Merel Bem, writer and journalist for De Volkskrant, Merel de Kok, director of Galerie Bart and also invites the public to form an opinion about this.


12.05.2022 / 17:00 – 21:00: Opening.

Join us for the festive opening night during Amsterdam Art Week.