What was Van Gogh TV?

Rehearsal for Hotel Pompino by Van Gogh TV in Amsterdam

Van Gogh TV was founded in an art-historical situation when collective artistic practices were becoming increasingly prominent. In 1991, an issue of the German magazine “Kunstforum” was dedicated to the “utopia of a collective art”, in which, in addition to Ponton or Van Gogh TV, artist collectives such as Irwin, the Guerilla Girls, General Idea or Survival Research Laboratories were portrayed. These groups differed from historical artist groups such as the Surrealists or Fluxus in that they not only shared a common mindset or aesthetic, but that they actually worked exclusively together and created their works collectively.

Karel Dudesek and Mike Hentz of Van Gogh TV were among the pioneers of this development. With Minus Delta t, they had already founded an art collective at the end of the 1970s in which they carried out actions and performances together with changing collaborators and worked as a band and as installation artists. Mike Hentz in particular has remained true to the ideas of collective art through his participation in other art collectives such as Frigo or Code Public; the environment of Van Gogh TV also included a number of other projects and works that are presented in greater detail here.

Van Gogh TV also reflected this practice in a number of texts, publications and interviews. A selection of these statements can be found here.