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Steef Crombach (b. 1992) was born in Maastricht in the South of the Netherlands. Crombach earned her B.F.A from the Royal Academy of Arts in The Hague in 2014. Her work 'Piet' was nominated by the Dutch King Willem-Alexander for the Royal Painters Price, she curated and designed the massive floating exhibition; 'Dirty Daisies', during Art The Hague and she was the recipient of the renowned 'Contribution young talent' grant from the Mondriaan Fund in the Netherlands. With the help of these funds, she was able to research and invest in the Austin art scene which led her to organize and curate the nine-artist exhibition 'Expedition Batikback' at Co-Lab Projects. Since that time she has been visiting the United States for extended periods of time to curate, teach, exhibit, and research. In March 2018 Crombach officially relocated to Austin, she was the first recipient of Big Medium's Line Residency and continues to show her collection of ‘manifestations with cultural and local significance’ on International platforms, often in the form of patterns.

Education:

2011-2014 – Royal Academy of Fine Arts, The Hague (NL) department: Fine Arts (painting)

2010-2011 – Academy of Fine Arts Maastricht (NL) Fine Arts

Exhibitions:

Solo shows

2019 - Big Medium’s The Line Hotel Residence, Austin, Texas (USA), End-presentation.

2017 - Vonkel, The hague (NL), Bij wijze van Ham.

Duo shows

2019 - Co-Lab Projects Springdale General Gallery, Austin, Texas (USA), M*A*S*H.

2019 - PumpProject at Cloud Tree Gallery, Austin, Texas (USA), Place + Repeat.

Group shows

2020 - Vault Stone Shop, Austin, Texas (USA), Mask Collection.

2020 - Cloud Tree Gallery, Austin, Texas (USA), Thread-Count.

2019 - Vault Stone Shop, Austin, Texas (USA), Flash Collection.

2018 - Co-Lab Projects Springdale General Gallery, Austin, Texas (USA), Secret Pop-up.

2018 - Big Medium, Austin Texas (USA), BigBanal during the West Austin Studio Tour.

2018 - Art Rotterdam, Rotterdam (NL), Prospects and Concepts 2018.

2017 - The Royal Palace, Amsterdam (NL), Royal Painters Price 2017.

2017 - Co-Lab Projects DEMO Gallery, Austin, Texas (USA), Expedition BatikBack.

2016 - Big Medium, Austin Texas (USA), East Austin Studio Tour.

2016 - Big Medium, Austin Texas (USA), West Austin Studio Tour.

2015 - In your living room, Maakhaven, The Hague (NL), The Cliff hanger show.

2015 - Maagdenhuis, Amsterdam (NL), Bloody Mary.

2015 - Yteismaa NGO, Helsinki (FI), Olohuonenayttely.

2015 - Roodkapje, Rotterdam (NL), Winterwolven RADICALS.

2014 - Het Kunstgemaal, Bronckhorst (NL), De Springplank tentoonstelling.

2014 - VROM, Den Haag (NL), 35 titles for a group show.

2013 - NEST, Den Haag (NL), Me, myself and I.

Prices/funds:

- Big Medium, Austin, TX: Line Residency at The Line Hotel Austin, 2019.

- Stroom, The Hague (Netherlands): PRO art projects contribution for the group exhibit ‘BigBanal’, 2018.

- Big medium, Austin, TX: Full Fellowship West Austin Studio Tour 2018.

- King Willem Alexander of the Netherlands: Nomination Dutch Royal Painters Prize, 2017.

- Mondriaan fund, Netherlands: Contribution Young talent, 2017.

- Stroom, The Hague (Netherlands): SPOT group exhibition contribution for group exhibit ‘Dirty Daisies’, 2016.

- Big Medium, Austin, TX: 3⁄4 Fellowship East Austin Studio Tour, 2016.

- Stroom, The Hague (Netherlands): SPOT individual exhibition contribution exhibition ’I Bogart’ at the West Austin Studio Tour, 2015.

- Big Medium, Austin, TX: Full fellowship West Austin Studio Tour, 2015.

- Stroom, The Hague (Netherlands: Stroom KABK Talent Invest prize, 2015.

Additional activities:

Teacher adult classes at the Contemporary Art School Laguna Gloria, Austin, Texas.

Independent curator

2017 - Curator and initiator for the international project; 'Expedition BatikBack', at Co-Lab Projects, Austin.

2016 - Initiator for the exhibition; ‘Big Banal’ during the West Austin Studio Tour.

2016 - Curator for the floating exhibition; ‘Dirty Daisies’, during Art The Hague.

2016 - Curator for the show ‘Everywhere and Always’, at gallery for contemporary art Vonkel, The Hague.

2016 - Curator for the show ‘Behind the visible’, at gallery for contemporary art Vonkel, The Hague.

Press:

2020 - Casey Alfstad, (April 2020) Steef Crombach: Globalization and Searching for Symbols. Interview on conceptanimals.com. https://www.conceptanimals.com/steefcrombach

2019 – Feature on CBS. We are Austin, (July 2019) Celebrating art, culture & community with Big Medium's artist residency at The LINE Austin. www.cbsaustin.com/features/we-are-austin/celebrating-art-culture-community-with-big-mediums-artist-residency-at-the-line-hotel-austin

2019 – Sean J Patrick Carney, (May 2019) 'M*A*S*H': Alexis Mabry and Steef Crombach at Co-Lab Projects www.glasstire.com/2019/05/13/mash-alexis-mabry-and-steef-crombach-at-co-lab-projects/

2018 – Klaartje Til, (October 2018) Steef Crombach, A Dutch Woman in Austin. Article on the Dutch Digital Magazine for Style and Culture POM. www.pom-magazine.nl/steef-crombach-a-dutch-woman-in-austin/

2018 – Roos van Rij, (July 2018) Februari: Steef Crombach www.freshcotton.com/nl/blogs/blog/kalender-februari-steef-crombach/

2017 – Tatiana Ryckman, (August 2017) Steef Crombach, Austin, and 'Hacked' Batik. Profile on the Houston based website Glasstire. www.glasstire.com/2017/08/18/steef-crombach-austin-and-hacked-batik/

2017 – Jeroen Bosch, (October 2017) Koninklijke prijs voor Schilderkunst 2017 www.trendbeheer.com/2017/10/09/koninklijke-prijs-voor-schilderkunst-2017/

2016 – Bertus Pieters, (oktober 2016) about the show 'Dirty Daisies'. www.villanextdoor.wordpress.com/2016/10/07/art-the-hague-2016-fokker-terminal-the-hague/

2016 – Erik Korsten, (July 2016) interview about curating the show 'Everywhere and Always' at gallery Vonkel as part of the radio program 'kunstlicht' on Den Haag FM (starts 15min in). www.denhaagfm.nl/luisteren/?src=920&t%5Byear%5D=2016&t%5Bmonth%5D=7&t%5Bday%5D=10&t%5Bhour%5D=10

2016 – David Brendan Hall, (May 2016) Picture of I Bogart in Austin Chronicle. www.austinchronicle.com/photos/west-austin-studio-tour-2016/44/

2014 – TINKEBELL, (Juli 2014). Op zoek naar studenten die superwezens worden. www.trouw.nl/tr/nl/14268/Tinkebell/article/detail/3689064/2014/07/14/Op-zoek-naar-studenten-die-superwezens-worden.dhtml

2014 – Niek Hendrix (juli 2014). Steeds meer druk op kunsttalent; 22 nieuwe makers om goed in de gaten te houden. www.cultureelpersbureau.nl/2014/07/de-nieuwe-aanstormende-kunsttalenten/

2014 – Rosa Helldorfer & Rob Groot Zevert (Nov 2014). Verslagen academie bezoeken. www.ernstiggeschikt.com/ernstig-geschikt-2014/den-haag-kabk/

2014 – Sophia Zürcher, (Juli 2014). Lichting 2014; KABK. www.kunstbeeld.nl

2014 – Niek Hendrix, (juli 2014). Eindexamen Expositie; KABK Den Haag. www.lost-painters.nl

2014 – Bertus Pieters, (juli 2014). Graduation Festival. Royal Academy of Art (KABK), The Hague. www.villanextdoor.wordpress.com

2014 – Picture Man-Balloon-Milk, (juli 2014). BK-Informatie

2014 – Lorelinde Verhees, (februari 2014). 35 titles for a group show. www.MetropolisM.com

ARTIST STATEMENT

Although my work radiates a resolute materiality in a firm shape, my approach to the world is poetic and speculative. I question the status of objects and situations. In my work I deal with concrete manifestations by adding an almost identical second layer to them. In this way I attempt to unscrew the anchor points in our perception.

The constant attempt to grasp my environment, and the time in which I live, forms the basis of my research. Seats in public transport have such gravitating patterns, and why are road stripes yellow? I collect these patterns, objects, colloquialisms, and cultural beacons, and I try to save them in my own, and others’ memory, by copying, morphing, and merging them in my work. This is our environment. This is what it looks like.

By showing my collection of ‘manifestations with cultural and local significance’, often in the form of patterns, I feel like I could enable people to see what invisibly shapes their direct environment and the way they are steered and positioned within it. With this, I hope to offer a more relative perspective upon our present time, and the aspects that might be part of our collective memory when we look back.

Recently my work has become much more personal. Realizing that my view on my environment as an expat differs greatly from natives around me. Whatever seems culturally and locally significant to me might be a result of my outsider view? It is a confusing and unearthing feeling that has manifested itself slowly into my work.