12 February till 24 March 2024

Pilar Mata Dupont and Erika Roux: Floodland: Research for a Dutch Western


Pilar Mata Dupont and Erika Roux, test shot on the Waddenzee, 2024

Kunsthuis SYB welcomes artists Pilar Mata Dupont and Erika Roux for a research residency from February 12 through March 24, 2024 under the title Floodland: Research for a Dutch Western.

With this residency, Mata Dupont and Roux combine their different approaches to filmmaking and research to dive into a shared interest in investigating urgent ideas surrounding the Dutch and Frisian local response to climate change and rising sea levels.

They particularly focus on deconstructing national myths and political narratives around water management. At Kunsthuis SYB, Mata Dupont and Roux re-imagine the Frisian landscape as the set of a western genre film. Namely, they investigate how the flat and watery scenery can be the setting for an upcoming film titled The Polder Western. For them, this is part of longer ongoing research on how the genre of Western films and concerns with rising water levels can be articulated within the artistic realm.

Drawing from three years of interviews, and writing, the artists  are working on materials towards the development  of a filmic work, depicting an absurdist version of the Netherlands as a Kafkaesque world set in a Western. 

Within the cinematic tropes of the Western genre, they have found a playful and relevant language to reflect on different political perspectives and forms of relating to territory, nature, and community, with complicated, and often competing, economic and social interests.

Together they reaffirm the place that fiction and cinematic language holds within their work in order to address personal concerns arising from living in an environmentally vulnerable country.

The research project Floodland: Research for a Dutch Western will result in a public presentation on Saturday March 23, 2024. More info will be announced soon. 

About the artists
Erika Roux is a visual artist and filmmaker based in Amsterdam. Her practice consists of a body of video works, short films, multichannel video installations and publications. With a rather intuitive, DIY and intimate approach to video and filmmaking, her work often navigates between the critical potential of fiction and re-enactment and the complications of documentary material. 

Latina artist Pilar Mata Dupont uses temporal strategies of looping, fragmentation, and dislocation to delve into the malleability of narratives of history and memory, researching extensively into the creation of told histories and their untold counterparts. In making her video, performance, and photography works, she often explores the structures and tropes of genre narratives. Mata Dupont’s recent practice has expanded into non-linear, character-focused, and concept-driven storytelling. Pilar Mata Dupont lives and works in Rotterdam.

The project is made possible by: