As part of an ambitious collaboration, Noah Latif Lamp and Rein Kooyman present Last Christmas, a photographic work that would weigh heavily on the conscience of any honourable western society, whose implication in the destruction of the natural world wields the real cost of overconsumption.
The large format photograph documents an art installation whose imagery lays naked the tyranny of abundance that is always with us but reaches a fever pitch during Christmas. The festivities bring about a natural state of reflection – a sacred window reserved for comfort and love – but with that, the pressure to tie loose ends, the worry of having enough money and time to buy gifts, create a sense of occasion for friends and family that lives up to expectations, overflowing with food, drink and presents that we could never come close to consuming, let alone wholesomely appreciate. The material and commercial greed that governs the ritual has come to devour our thoughts, emotions, time and space, even our essential purpose. We accept the wholesale chimera of Christmas, but what is it really about? Beneath the plastic wrapping, will we find unconditional compassion for all people? A generous and charitable spirit? Or have those values been eroded?
A confrontational commentary to these questions played out in the depths of the Amazon jungle during the holidays. Documented in a 12-minute film which will be released alongside the image, Lamp returns to his ancestral roots in Suriname to embark on the installation. He hijacks the cultural imagery of Christmas, adorning the lush greens of the rainforest with the trinkets of our materialist abundance: synthetic, lifeless and in many ways toxic, if not most certainly disposable. The lungs of the earth laden with shiny bulbs, the short-lived glimmer of tinsel and string lights. Unambiguous in its allegory, it plays out like act of cannibalism: the transitory altar of the family home takes post in the very environment it destroys by chain of effect. We must ask ourselves if the banal chaos of cheap plastics is commensurate with the razing of a natural wonder.
Careful to leave no trace of this destructive detritus, a total clean-up was completed following the 48-hour shooting session. Moreover, Lamp intends the message of this work to reach beyond the image alone; not only should it encourage preservation, but it should give back to the natural resources from which it extracts. For every work sold, half of the revenue will be donated to Threes for All
The Covid-19 measures will always be strictly applied at this exhibition. As a result, we will invite people via email in a time slot. Opening is the 22th of December 17:00 till 22:00 and 23th of December 10:00 till 17:00 at Loods 6 KSNM - Laan 143 Amsterdam. Please RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org