“Fifty-two percent of the population of The Hague feel some degree of loneliness.” This headline shocked a lot of people this spring. But it also raised a lot of questions.
“Fifty-two percent of the population of The Hague feel some degree of loneliness.” This headline shocked a lot of people this spring. But it also raised a lot of questions. What is lonely, and what is alone? There’s no simple answer to this question. Young or old, living in isolation or surrounded by loved ones; anyone can have feelings of being lonely or alone at some time. Loneliness can blow over and make you stronger, but long-term loneliness is a cause for concern and can even be life-threatening. The exhibition Solo&Happy?! shows a range of different people from in and outside The Hague, all of whom are alone and/or lonely – either because they have chosen to live alone, because of their circumstances, or simply because that’s how life turned out.
A pet brings happiness, stories and energy into people’s lives. In her project A cuddly home, Sanne Gielens (1991) made portraits of people living on their own in The Hague with their pets. What role do these dogs, cats, and other animals play in the lives of our fellow-residents?
Lotte van Gaalen (1990) makes audio stories. In this exhibition, Lotte is presenting an audio-installation recounting the stories of only children from different generations. 14-year-old Anna, 29-year-old Abel and 67-year-old Margo talk about the desire to shake things up and having to care for parents on your own.
Moved by the story of a man from Rotterdam who died alone, Minsook Kang (1985) decided to explore what it is like to die alone in the Netherlands. In her multimedia installation, the South Korean-born artist takes visitors on a journey through some of her discoveries and observations.
‘Himono onna’ is the term used for Japanese women who are not actively looking for love or commitment; a group that is steadily increasing in numbers. The fact that these women do not want a relationship does not necessarily mean that they are against marriage. On the contrary, many of these Japanese singles are keen to experience their dream wedding. And this is precisely what they do – on their own. The New York-based photographer Naomi Harris (1973) made portraits of some of these Japanese solo-brides.
From home gardens to Christmas dinners; Fonds 1818 supports countless projects run by organisations and committed residents, designed to combat loneliness in the region. In the exhibition, we are highlighting one of the more recent projects in words and pictures: the School for Oneness. At this school, which opened in June 2019, experiential experts teach you to deal with feelings of loneliness using their own specially developed method.
Watch, talk and listen during the live programme. Featuring performances, film screenings and interviews during Hoogtij and Vol Lof. Loneliness is also the theme of the Fonds 1818 Magazine, which you can order free of charge on this website from early October onwards.
thursday 05 september 11:00 - saturday 30 november 16:00