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Ben Oostrum

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The future, according to some scientists, will be exactly like the past, only far more expensive. Ben Oostrum, the Rotterdam-based sculptor and designer, challenges that notion through the exploration of possibilities in art and design that are presented by new production methods and consumer demands. His designs are an inexpensive tribute to the good things to come. The best way to predict the future, after all, is to invent it

According to Oostrum, his work can be seen as nostalgic reconstructions of past images of the future; inspirations include artists like Sol Lewitt and films like Kubrick's "2001 A Space Odyssey."

These works, Oostrum says, set a standard for Science Fiction in those days that has stayed more or less unchanged. "Sure, special effects have developed, but the optimistic expectation of the future prevails today although the future they originally referred to already has arrived."

Oostrum completed art school in Rotterdam in 1989 and became a sculptor. In 1994, he began a stint at the European Ceramic Work Center in the Netherlands and has mainly been working with ceramics since. He has had several exhibitions to date, and his designs have been purchased by collections like the Museum Boijmans and the Caldic Collection in Rotterdam. In 1997, Oostrum won the VSB Prize for his ceramic light sculpture for a swimming pool in Vlaardingen.

Oostrum adheres to Dan Quayle's precise formulation: The future will be better tomorrow. 

Copyright © 2008 David Shearer   
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