Suzanne Swarts 2007

The Grass is Greener on the Other Side

In 1998, Kasper Andreasen studied graphic design at the London College of printing in England. He received his Bachelor of Graphic design degree from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam in 2002. While studying in the Netherlands he met Tine Melzer. She was studying both graphic design and autonomous visual art at the same Academy. After their graduation, Andreasen followed the Research Masters program at the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht, and Melzer opted for a post-graduate course at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam. Based on their shared interest in language and symbolic systems, the two artists recently decided to enter into collaboration.

For days on end Andreasen and Melzer drew, filling sheets of paper with short, vigorous green lines. This monotonous, almost meditative act could perhaps have been considered a performance, were it not that is was directed toward a further end: the artists’ book ‘The Grass is Greener on the Other Side’. For the artists, this daily ritual was important for entering into dialogue with each other on conventions and rules in language. Drawing the lines became a form of defining and visualizing boundaries. The large number of pages filled with blades of grass commands respect for the sheer drudgery that has gone into the work Andreasen and Melzer have produced, not unlikely that of copyists in a medieval
scriptorium. Their decision to ask the monks of St. Benedictus Abbey in Vaals to do the binding for the books was therefore very fitting. After some hesita-tion the monks agreed to take on the task. According to the binder, ‘Initially I was dubious about binding these books; we had never before received a similar request. But ultimately I saw it was good.’

The Grass is Greener on the Other Side’ is comprised of two parts: one with the drawing by Melzer, and the other with those by Andreasen. The edition is three sets, of which two remain in the property of the artists. The third set was acquired by the Caldic Collection. The book is accompanied by a film in which Melzer’s and Andreasen’s hands are visible while engaged in drawing a landscape composed of lines.

2007 Published in Artists’ Books by Caldic Collection, Rotterdam, reprinted in 2009