Don’t ask Jeroen and Joep Verhoeven if they have seen Dead Ringers, the film neurotic David Cronenberg (1989) on two doctors, twins, Beverly and Elliot Mantle, interpreted by the unique Jeremy Irons (the british expression comes from the world of horse racing and the look-alikes used for rigging paris, False Pretenses is the wise French title). They know nothing of this reference genetic overwhelming. And yet, the Verhoeven Twins are a phenomenon in and of itself, their resemblance is theatrical, as their agreement is symbiotic, as their forces seem to be compounded by their union that disarms even a true twin, as Anais Feliciano Ripoche, emissary of Piaget. The swiss house watch and jewellery supports the two Dutch artists until the end of their quest thorough the union impossible matters. Here they are as two echoes of one and the same entity that vibrate and papillonnent around their installation in preparation for “Dysfunctional” at the Galleria Giorgio Franchetti alla Ca ‘ d’oro during the 58th Venice Biennale.

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Francois Cap/François Bouchon / Le Figaro

Moments of Happiness is the name of this project venetian, which recreates in a suspension monumental miracle bubbles of soap, iridescent, unpredictable, geometric and ephemeral. Soap Bubbles, painting to 1734 by the great painter Jean Siméon Chardin (1699-1779), is one of the trophies of the Metropolitan Museum of New York. They symbolized then the ephemeral nature of life. The Verhoeven Twins claim at the time the reference to Chardin and the obsession of the observation of the world in its perfection and complexity. There are childhood, in all his stubbornness, at the two gold-seekers and adventure novel, “terra incognita” as the creators of atlas of the Seventeenth Dutch. Obsessed by the light, they remain at the border of art and design, reject in chorus the “boxes, in which all the world encloses all the world.” No category seems to also contain them, as these two live alone with their ideas on their planet, as well as a duet of the Little Prince. Their workshop temporary is in Breda, North Brabant, at the confluence of the Aa and the Mark, the historic town of the war of eighty Years, where was signed, a fragile compromise between the provinces, the insurgent and the Spanish in 1565. In a suburb very green, neat and tidy, but without this beautiful story of heritage, nor any madness apparent, it is a focus of science and wacky, worthy of the ” laboratory made “Doc” Brown in Back to the future Zemeckis (1985).


wearing white Coats are the same, diet the same, blond and dyed pink the North the same, charming almost southern in this cool Northern Europe, Jeroen and Joep Verhoeven like to play out of the confusion of twins. Even if, very quickly, Jeroen (from the Greek Hieronymus, and so Jerome) is distinguished by his vivacity, his talkativeness, his authority. More calm, Joep (diminutive Dutch Jozef) listening without impatience, like him as soon as he starts to speak, very quickly, like a child who wants to tell a story. Their sentences are complete, do not impinge one on the other. Their workshop enigmatic is their kingdom. It is mid-way of their true studio of Amsterdam and their consulting engineer in Rotterdam. They dance like beautiful devils between two replicas – shared – in and out for a moment of their cocoon brotherly to explain to you why and how. To achieve this illusion, they have invented a technology that is both accurate and whimsical. In the garage was cluttered, spheres of glass everywhere, whole or cut net by the diamond machine bidouillée into a robot, of chemical products the intense fragrance, the blue gloves of a surgeon, of stolen devices for medical imaging that control the surface of the glass and that they themselves have tailored to their needs. The tests were countless and of “shifts” of teams (5 people or more at the peak of the action) have been working day and night to Venice. As in the workshop restricted Giacometti, 46 rue Hippolyte-Maindron (Xiv) to Montparnasse, a sort of bed, on the floor, is for the one who remains at the bedside of the work.

FRANCOIS CAP/François Bouchon / Le Figaro

“The first sketches date back to seven years ago. Joep was working in India on an idea of embroidery woven in metal. He has created a workshop there, he lived for two and a half years in Bangalore. Of course, we were talking every day via Skype. We always worked together, but from a distance! It was a room that looked like bubbles. I have drawn a little girl who makes bubbles thinking of Chardin. It all started there”, explains Jeroen, clearly the more extroverted and the more demonstrative (index, he keeps his goggles planted in its loops). Last December, they showed the first prototypes of bubbles at the Carpenters Gallery in New York, 693 Fifth Avenue, the Shape of water the Shape of Water), in the exhibition “Vanitas of Life”. These suspensions are in borosilicate glass, a material more resistant to thermal shock and mechanical as the conventional glass that they have diverted from its scientific uses, and adapted to their idea of artists. They are returned to the Carpenters Gallery in Venice, in the exhibition off of the Biennial, a ten-minute walk from the Rialto. “Dysfunctional” brings together 21 artists or groups of artists.
Of the workshop enough on Joep Van Lieshout of Rotterdam (we owe him the Domestikator overly sexual as the Louvre refused the end of 2017 and the Centre Pompidou hosted jauntily on the forecourt) the star designer Dutch Maarten Baas. Magicians of Studio Drift in Amsterdam, which combines design and nature, golden metal and stamens of the dandelion, the fashion designer, californian Rick Owens, who wrapped it and aveugla the royal statues of Versailles for a “winter Journey”, a contemporary and bizarre, by the end of 2017. Nice company, so.

“We are storytellers (storytellers), from fantasy to factory, from statement (statement of intent) in the product,” boasts their Web site ( “Light, gold, beauty of the gesture of the craftsman, a meticulous, inheritance of knowledge, transmission, infinite dreams, we share this with Piaget, the house of the know-how thanks to which we have been able to change scale and imagine a real installation cosmic”, insists Jeroen, 43 years old, who never stops moving, as the child feared by all the teachers. “To make this cloud of 12 bubbles, it is pure madness. Glue the pieces of the sphere on another sphere is almost mission impossible. We have been working with for months. The production was not started until January 2019! We will then make five the constellations on able to five shops of Piaget, unique pieces that will play gold, may be a liquid, and its shadows,” says Joep.


Francois Cap/François Bouchon / Le Figaro

“We made all the Design Academy in Eindhoven and we were both selected among the six finalists on several hundreds of graduates in 2005,” says Jeroen. The Verhoeven Twins have an older sister, “a girl adorable, very quiet, tea drinker, and a professor, she must not be of the same father”. They laugh in cadet slingers of this huge contrast. Science was their first love, version precise examination and insistent nature. “We were fascinated by the ants. The other children looked up. We scrutions the ground, we looked at each insect in detail. We were really in our bubble. We dreamed of. We educated one another. We had a lot of problems with our teachers. We were inspired not, they were only repeating what they knew. We lost the thread very quickly. You always wanted to know why, not just how.”

Leaving the sand castles with the other kids, they focused on experiences that transform the sand into glass and on the history of art is full of challenges. “At each moment of the world, millions of things are invented. But few survive the test of time. We have been inspired by a drawing by François Linke (1855-1946), French cabinetmaker of Czech origin, by his life of which we read in turn the story, we made it an office. It is as well. We live together, we think together, we work together, it is difficult to accept for the others, the women of our lives in particular” slice Jeroen. Joep, a young father, is more conciliatory. They share the same enthusiasm for the other artists. Hands giant the artist Lorenzo Quinn (son of Anthony Quinn) that were flowing out of the Grand Canal near the Rialto bridge and clinging to a palazzo venetian in 2017. Christo and The Floating Piers on lake Iseo (Italy) in 2016, floating pontoons, on which marched thousands of fans dazzled, “experience absolutely magic by its use context, its prodigious, its power, sensory”. Jeff Koons and his Puppy, a giant sculpture of a dog in flowers view at Versailles and installed to remain in front of the Guggenheim Bilbao. “Just a never-before-seen, a revolution in art” There, they speak with a single voice.

“Dysfunctional”, group show organized by the Carpenters Workshop Gallery until November 24 at the Galleria Giorgio Franchetti alla Ca ‘ d’oro, Venice.