After a period of forced closure, Roodkapje Rotterdam’s exhibition space will reopen on Friday 29 May with a Cultural Supermarket. As in the normal supermarket nowadays, you queue for a shopping cart and walk the mandatory route so that you keep sufficient distance from the other customers. The difference is that you don’t buy household products here, but art. ‘We offer a wide variety of work and other products with prices from 1 euro to a few thousand,’ says Gerben Willers, artistic director of Roodkapje Rotterdam.
Cultural shopping evening
Roodkapje Rotterdam is a cultural platform and meeting place for young artists and performers. ‘We normally have concerts and exhibitions on offer, or you can eat at our restaurant. But everything is now closed. Our programme which supervises young artists is currently also at a standstill,’ explains Gerben. ‘Other artists also have cancelled commissions and, therefore, are missing out on money during this period. That’s why we devised the Cultural Supermarket together. By shopping at our supermarket, you support young creatives and the cultural sector.’ There is late night shopping at Roodkapje’s Cultural Supermarket every Friday.
Art and other products
The supermarket is full of art and other products, from T-shirts to booklets and vases, varying from 1 euro to a few thousand. Gerben: ‘You see works made in the past 12 weeks by progressive artists. We also sell the merchandise (like water bottles and T-shirts) from Motel Mozaique, one of the first festivals that was cancelled due to the corona measures.’ Roodkapje’s popular restaurant Burgertrut also has products on offer. In the freezer compartment, you will find burger packages so you can prepare your own Burgertrut meal at home. ‘Club-Mate and Fritz Kola are also on the shelves. Things that people have missed in the past period,’ says Gerben.
Shopping at a safe distance
You can reserve a time slot online for your shopping moment. With your reserved ticket, you get a shopping cart with which you walk the marked route through the supermarket. Gerben: ‘15 people are allowed to enter the store at the same time, and everyone is given half an hour. Just like at Ikea, we have a fixed route, so we can guarantee a safe distance.’ The evening shopping tickets are free, but you can also opt to support Roodkapje and buy a ticket for 5 or 10 euros. ‘We had developed this ticket system already because we want to be accessible to everyone. For other events or exhibitions, we offer tickets for 0 and 8 euros. Each visitor can then determine what they can afford at that time.’
Cultural experience at one and a half metre
Roodkapje’s Cultural Supermarket is a way to experience culture in a metre-and-a-half society. ‘For small locations like ours, it’s not possible to organise events where we can guarantee one and a half metres. The supermarket is a starting point to explore new experiences in the field of culture within the set guidelines,’ says Gerben. ‘I hope that fellow institutions in the cultural sector will get through this period. My message to them is ‘Hang in there!’
Tekst: Anne Klapmuts
Foto credits: Lara Arnoldus