Press Release Exhibition: A Sheet of Paper Can Become a Knife

© Zanele Muholi  Courtesy Of Stevenson Cape Townjohannesburg And Yancey Richardson New York Photo: Zanele Muholi, #4144, 2018, Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/Johannesburg and Yancey Richardson, New York (c) Zanele Muholi

1 October, Amsterdam The Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development is proud to announce that A Sheet of Paper Can Become a Knife, a thematic exhibition featuring ten international artists, will open at the Prince Claus Fund Gallery on 8 November 2018. The exhibition brings together contemporary artists who are connected by the struggle against violence. The participating artists, all Prince Claus laureates, will exhibit together for the first time in the Prince Claus Fund Gallery in Amsterdam. (Nederlands)

The exhibition title, A Sheet of Paper Can Become a Knife, is inspired by a poem by Tsering Woeser that suggests that anything can become a weapon—inexplicably and without warning. Curator Selene Wendt explains, ‘The title resonates as an apt metaphor for the proximity and threat of violence throughout the world. The entangled histories of violence and oppression conveyed in the exhibition convey a deeply unsettling collective narrative of social injustice. Although the primary focus is on contemporary society, the brutal weight of history looms heavily throughout. The stories that unfold reveal striking similarities between forms of violence regardless of location.’

The exhibition features a wide range of artwork including photography, video, installation, sculpture, textile, and work on paper.  Works range from a collaboratively embroidered textile by Teresa Margolles (1963, Mexico, 2012 Prince Claus laureate); a series of photographs of female guerrilla fighters of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) taken by Newsha Tavakolian (1981, Iran, 2015 Principal Prince Claus laureate); galvanized steel sculptures by Naiza Khan (1968, Pakistan, 2013 Prince Claus laureate), and an installation by FX Harsono (1949, Indonesia, 2014 Prince Claus laureate). The exhibition will also feature work by Regina José Galindo (1974, Guatemala, 2010 Prince Claus laureate); Oscar Muñoz (1951, Colombia, 2013 Prince Claus laureate); David Goldblatt (1930-2018, South Africa, founder of 2018 Principal Prince Claus laureate Market Photo Workshop); Amar Kanwar (1964, India, 2017 Prince Claus laureate), and Cildo Meireles (1948, Brazil, 1999 Prince Claus laureate), and Zanele Muholi (1972, South Africa, 2013 Prince Claus laureate). Tsering Woeser, the writer and blogger whose poem was a source of inspiration for the exhibition, received the Prince Claus Award in 2011 (1966, Tibet/China).

About the curator: Selene Wendt is an independent curator, writer, and founder of The Global Art Project, which was established to promote contemporary art across geographic borders, with particular focus on artists from Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa. For many years she has been an advisor to the Prince Claus Fund. 

Wendt will be present at the 8 November opening and during Amsterdam Art Weekend to give visitors an introduction to the exhibition.

A Sheet of Paper Can Become a Knife

Prince Claus Fund Gallery

Herengracht 603

1017 CE Amsterdam

Entrance is free

Exhibition Opening:

Thursday 8 Nov. 17:30-20:30 hrs

Exhibition dates & times:

Monday through Friday 10:00 – 17:00 hrs

9 November 2018 through 26 April 2019

Special opening times during Amsterdam Art Weekend:

Friday 23 Nov. 10:00-20:00 hrs

Saturday 24 & Sunday 25 Nov. 12.00-18.00 hrs

About the Prince Claus Fund:

The Prince Claus Fund supports, connects and celebrates artists and cultural practitioners from regions where cultural expression is under pressure. The Prince Claus Awards honour outstanding individuals and organisations whose work has had a positive impact on their societies.



For more information, interviews and photo material please contact

Martine Willekens, Prince Claus Fund PR Manager

[email protected]


Sarah Smith, Coordinator Communications Prince Claus Fund

[email protected]