Archipel, 2017

With the kind support of Marres Maastricht (NL)
Special thanks to curators Barbara Cueto and Bas Hendrikx
Venue: Marres, House for Contemporary Culture, Maastricht (NL)


“People told me they had been lying awake at night, wondering who this ‘Thomas’ who sent them such a puzzling postcard was”, Miriam Sentler comments on her project Archipel. Idiosyncratic and melancholic names given to remote islands by explorers throughout history, such as Possession and Loneliness, were the starting point for this fictional cluster of islands. Sentler interprets the concept of travel as something that can be both physical and mental. The notion of someone adding an emotional charge to a physical location by it led to names such as Besviken (Swedish for ‘disappointed’), Pembohong (‘liar’ in Indonesian) and Haluava (Finnish for ‘desirous’). The postcards of the fictional islands can be sent anonymously from Marres, addressed to the artist or to a recipient of choice. Is this work intended as a social experiment? “No, but it does attempt to play with the boundaries of our world”

- Bas Hendrikx, curator Marres Currents #4

Inspired by ‘phantom islands’, fake islands added intentionally to world maps by companies in order to avoid plagiarism, a cluster of three fictional islands was created using sand, pigments, and water. These were then photographed and made into postcards. Over the last couple of months, 432 postcards were written by participants and sent all over the world. With the kind support of Marres, center of contemporary culture.