Here Is Always Somewhere Else

One day the father of Dutch conceptual artist Bas Jan Ader decided to ride his bicycle from the Netherlands to Jerusalem, almost on a whim. Years later, in 1975, Ader, living in the United States, would himself make a daring attempt to cross the Atlantic in the smallest boat ever. He disappeared at sea; he was thirty-three. His final performance was entitled In Search of the Miraculous. Dutch-born filmmaker Rene Daalder also seeks the inexplicable in this study of his friend Ader. The artist left behind a small body of work-some photos and films, a number of performances and actions, some texts. For conceptual art, it has an unusually romantic bent, as Ader repeatedly explored failure-falling from a roof, dropping from a tree, riding into a canal. Recently his work has been discovered by a younger generation of artists. Through discussions with some of them, including Tacita Dean and Lonnie van Brummelen, as well as with artists of Ader's generation such as Ger van Elk, Wim T. Schippers, and others, Daalder creates a fascinating portrait of an artist and an age.

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