2020 Schoonhoven / NL

A review of the International HammerClub Meeting Schoonhoven

This year the International HammerClub Meeting would have been in Schoonhoven in the middle of the Netherlands. Fate (and the corona virus in particular) decided otherwise. For some of the participants, the borders were closed and those who would have been able to come, could not have done anything in Schoonhoven. The school, our host who celebrated its 125th birthday this year, and the hotels and restaurants were closed by government order, as was the museum.

At the time the meeting was forced to be canceled, no one could predict that the days from May 29 to June 1 would be a bright weekend with lots of sun and temperatures above 25 degrees. Really perfect weather for hammering outside, meeting friends and acquaintances and chilling under a cool glass of lemonade or an alcoholic drink. We could have danced in the moonlight late into the night or philosophized about the silversmith craft. It all turned out differently. Schoonhoven made an empty impression this weekend and many of us were still confined to our home or workshop.

Fortunately, the exhibition in the Dutch Silver Museum could take place, however starting from 2 June. The museum invited the makers to submit a video in which they told something about themselves and the work they made. The videos can be viewed on YouTube or on the HammerClub website. When I binge-watched the submissions I laughed a lot and I was overcome with melancholy. But also with the thought that we should make videos more often as part of the HammerClub community.
Harry Brookhuis made a beautiful catalog of the pieces in this exhibition. The catalogue can be ordered by sending Harry an e-mail (€ 12,50 excl. shipping).

Tuesday, June 2, Maja Houtman and I visited the exhibition and made a short video for you, so everyone who is not able to visit the exhibition (and that is probably most of you) can still taste the atmosphere of the environment in which their work is exposed.

This review has a different tone and content than that from previous years. Let’s hope that this was once and never again and that we can meet in London next year in good health.

Janjaap Luijt.