Mieke Gerritzen is a pioneer in design of digital media, a proficient artist, producer and director, based in Amsterdam. She graduated at the Geritt Rietveld Academy in 1987. She founded The Image Society. Her work always revolves around exploring the relationship between images and various aspects of contemporary life. Mieke’s work is always thought-provoking and critical towards the way we devour images that are served to us every day of our lives. She often points out the paradox of the abundance of visual material on the one hand, and our illiteracy when it comes to really understanding what we see on the other hand.
One of Mieke Gerritzen’s points of action is exhibition design. She encourages the viewer to think out of the box by taking the exhibited art out of the usual gallery spaces to public, to the department stores, or to factory halls. For example, she made an interactive game in Venice in 2011. It was an urban game that let the players rank portraits of (in)famous people — a lot of them belong somewhere in the middle of good and evil. The more diversity in opinions of the player crowd, the more the portraits grew, shrank and shifted around the screen.
One of Mieke’s most known projects is The Image Society. It was founded in collaboration with various institutions and initiatives that have sprung up over the last 30 years. The purpose of The Image Society is to explore the vast influence of the Internet on art, design and culture. Here is an excerpt from their mission statement on their website:
„ (...) Yet the most characteristic quality of this new social development may not be the number of images that confronts us but rather our deep need to visualise everything we deem important. We do this en masse, even though most of us aren’t trained to do so.“
So far, The Image Society has released six projects. For example, a book The Art of Control, a unique self-help book that deals with the idea of control as an artistic pursuit that sharpens our creative abilities.
Mieke’s fascination with all things visual become contagious after stumbling upon her body of work. Her projects are thought-provoking, critical and on top of that, beautifully executed. She has the attributes every designer should have: being critical, thinking out of the box, while keeping the target audience in mind. Her work is a critical mirror of the society she lives in. The viewer is being taken into the curated world of contemporary fetishised idols of our age. Then he becomes aware that this is not fiction nor overexageration, he then leaves with a fresh perspective on the content he learned to consume since his early age.