Each January, Richard Benaars and Frits Gronert, co-directors of Rotterdam’s Galerie Atelier Herenplaats, set up a booth at the Outsider Art Fair in the Puck Building in New York City. They spend the next four days talking with people about their artists.
Visitors learn that Laan Irodjojo, probably the gallery’s most recognizable artist, wanders Rotterdam with a sketchbook and then returns to his studio to make precise paintings of buildings and bridges. Hein Dingemans is an avid student of native cultures, as is evident in his work. His stylized portraits depict muscular men from around the world, including Polynesians from the Marquesas Islands, Aborigines, Tutsis, Inuits and Sudanese. Johanneke van Nus, a devoted reader of the Bible, illustrates scenes from the life of Jesus in a pared-down, cartoon-like idiom.
When Benaars and Gronert talk