‘I’m proud of the exhibition on hip-hop and fashion’

Shehera Cave is curator at Kunsthal Rotterdam. She puts on exhibitions with great passion, where she seeks connection with the city. She thinks one of the best things about Rotterdam is the mix of cultures. “It creates surprises, just like art does.” Shehera is our Rotterdammer of the week.

Is there an exhibition or project you are most proud of?

“When I started in Kunsthallen three years ago, my first project was the exhibition ‘Street Dreams: How Hiphop taken over Fashion’. For this we worked with Aruna Vermeulen from HipHopHuis and Lee Stuart from Patta. In a short time, about half a year, we made the big exhibition in hall 1. This intensive form of collaboration to make an exhibition was new to me. As a curator, you think about what an exhibition is going to look like, now I had to discuss everything. It was very interesting and resulted in a beautiful end result. ”

“During the opening of ‘Street Dreams’, I looked around and saw a reflection of Rotterdam. At openings, you often see older, white people. Now there were people of all backgrounds and ages in the Art Gallery. I’m still proud of that! ”

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Is that one of your motives in your work? Get other people to the museum?

“I am not preoccupied with target groups, but I have a different view of Rotterdam. I was born near Maashaven and when I was eight I moved to Vreewijk. When I used to go to museums, I never recognized myself. I would like to change that. And I want more people to get in touch with art. It is so important. Even if you do not get it; it does something to you. Art can surprise people and put them on a different basis. ”

What collaboration are you looking forward to?

“In May 2022, we will take over Pauluskerk completely with ‘All you can Art’: it will be very cool. We have always had this exhibition in the summer for six years, where we invite visitors to do things with artists. At the moment, the Auditorium is full “with six studios by different artists. There are always three vacancies where you can work. Many visitors who come in think at first that it is something for children, but everyone can join.”

“All you can Art will take place for the first time this autumn. Together with our partners, we have selected twenty households where works of art ‘go to sleep’. For example, at Het Gemaal in Afrikaanderwijk, with the elderly at a Laurens institution or at the crisis center in Pauluskerk. The works will remain in this place for two weeks. The artists and students at the Willem de Kooning Academy go to these places to interview the residents about the art. From there, they create new works, which are then hung up in those places. For example, we seek out groups that do not go to museums themselves. I really like that. †

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Shehera is a proud Rotterdammer, but the question is whether she will stay that long. She is looking for a house to buy and is having a hard time as a lone starter in the overheated housing market.

Tell me, what does your search look like so far?

“I grew up in the south and would like to return. There is a lot of green there and I love the mix of cultures that live together. I only get a stomach ache from the high prices. As a single, it is almost impossible to find a home in Rotterdam. That’s outrageous, right? Rotterdam is my city! I’m watching now with my niece so we have a better chance. Hopefully we can find a house where we both have our own floor. ”

“The worst thing is that I have always defended Rotterdam. I’ve been fighting for my city and now I may not be able to stay here. I also think it’s a shame what it does to the mix of the city. By the time I was six, I was already eating mint couscous with my Moroccan neighbor. Living in a multicultural neighborhood creates surprises. You learn new things and nothing is too strange. “If everyone is the same, it’s going to be boring, isn’t it?”

The exhibition ‘This is Hallstatt, Kein museum’ is currently in the Kunsthal. Rotterdam photographer Hans Wilschut took pictures of the small Austrian village of Hallstatt, which is overrun by mainly Asian tourists. During the corona pandemic, he went back to see what it looks like without hordes of people. Shehera: “The public reacts so enthusiastically to this exhibition. It is precisely with these kinds of little stories that you can surprise me, I can use all my creativity in that. ”

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