Jan Rosseel

Back-up: finale of a triptych by Jan Rosseel

The exhibition Back-up at Stroom is the final instalment of a triptych that started in 2016 at De Brakke Grond and continued at Museum Dr. Guislain. This exhibition reflects a new maturity and deepening of the artist's themes, as well as adding new work.


What do we personally remember of collective events? What makes an image iconic? Can we even forget historical events in our own times - with so many images being produced of everything that happens? And in which ways are our personal and collective memories stored for the future? Over the past five years, these questions served as a point of departure for the artistic research of photographer and ‘visual storyteller' Jan Rosseel. This research intensified further during a fellowship at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS) in 2015. Rosseel was the very first artist to be awarded this honor.

Insights gained in this period form the foundation for Rosseel's project Back-up, which takes the shape of three consecutive exhibitions. The third part of the triptych at Stroom Den Haag focuses on a new theme: the trial of Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu in 1989. This subject connects to the very foundations of Rosseel's research: the merging of personal recollections, the shaping of our collective memory and history by the media and the role played by public perception and images in these processes.

The triptych 
Back-up is a triptych of de Brakke Grond (Amsterdam), Museum Dr. Guislain (Ghent, BE) and Stroom. After two exhibitions in Amsterdam and Ghent, the exhibition in The Hague is the finale. 

Jan Rosseel's solo-exhibition has been set up at:

De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam
Dec 10, 2016 - Jan 29, 2017 
With special focus on media 


Museum Dr. Guislain, Ghent (BE) 
March 11 - May 28, 2017 
With special focus on the psyche 


And will open at:

Stroom, The Hague 
Dec 2, 2017 - Feb 18, 2018 
With special focus on politics

About the artist 
Jan Rosseel (Brussels/The Hague, 1979) studied documentary photography at the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague and photojournalism at the Danish School of Media and Journalism in Aarhus. Rosseel's work is best described as ‘visual storytelling'. It lies somewhere between a fictional narrative and a record of reality - between art and journalism. His projects both reconstruct historical events in artistic terms and question the reliability of our memories and mental processes. A striking and well-known example is his visual study Belgian Autumn, which centers on the violent robberies perpetrated by the Gang of Nivelles. Rosseel's photos have been published in variety of magazines and newspapers, including The New York Times, Le Monde, De Volkskrant / Volkskrant Magazine, Vrij Nederland, De Standaard / DS Magazine, De Morgen, Stern and Foam Magazine. His work has been presented in venues at, among other places, Amsterdam, Antwerp, New York, Paris, Rome and Tokyo.

Back-up is a triptych of De Brakke Grond, Museum Dr. Guislain (Ghent, BE) and Stroom Den Haag. 

On December 2nd, at 5 pm, the exhibition will open officially at Stroom Den Haag. More info can be found here

Want to know more about the artist? Read more about his earlier and current projects. 

Image Jan Rosseel, 'Dock of the trial of Nicolae en Elena Ceausescu (2017)'.
Jan Rosseel, 'On the Aesthetics of Violence (2016)'.
With support fromMondriaan Fund, The Art of Impact, Akademie van Kunsten, the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study, city of The Hague
Co-production with De Brakke Grond, Stroom Den Haag and Museum Dr. Guislain