The Supervisory Board has decided to appoint Maaike Lauwaert as the Chair of the Executive Board of the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. Lauwaert will start on 1 November 2022 and will succeed Interim Chairperson Cees in ’t Veld.

Judith van Kranendonk, Chair of the academy’s Supervisory Board, comments on Maaike Lauwaert’s appointment: “We are delighted with Maaike’s arrival. We are gaining a Chair with a great track record in the cultural sector, who is well acquainted with the independent art academy that is the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, and who has the qualities to fulfil the role of figurehead and internal source of inspiration with a distinctive vision.”

Maaike Lauwaert (1978) obtained her PhD at Maastricht University and then worked at the Mondriaan Fund. She later went to Stroom in The Hague as visual arts programmer and frequently published in magazines such as Metropolis M, De Witte Raaf, Kaleidoscope and Artforum. In 2016, Maaike Lauwaert was asked to take on the role of intendant at De Appel, where she undertook the complex task of leading the institute through turbulent times. She currently works there as business director where she has been co-responsible for steering De Appel back into a strong position. In recent years, Lauwaert has championed a strong representation of the arts and the importance of autonomous institutions for a healthy and vibrant arts sector as Chair of the national interest group De Zaak Nu and founding chair of the local interest group MOKER.

“I vividly remember the countless times I visited the Gerrit Rietveld Academie as a visitor, colleague or external examiner,” says Lauwaert. “From those many moments a mix of colours, sounds and smells stand out, the multitude of people and conversations and everyone in the middle of doing something, going somewhere. With each visit, things big or small were different, yet what was at the heart of the Academy, was always there: that beating heart of lively singularity. It is with great pleasure and pride that I take up the position of Chair. The Gerrit Rietveld Academy stands for autonomy, for idiosyncrasy, for not walking the beaten track but radically choosing your own course. That is unique and must be cherished and further developed.”

Photo by Jordi de Vetten