Five Minutes With... Jaap Sinke & Ferry van Tongeren


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Ferry van Tongeren (left) and Jaap Sinke (right)


What’s your morning routine?
Ferry: Regretting staying up too late last night over one, two or three cups of coffee.
Jaap: I ride my bicycle to the studio humming or whistling. That never happened before when I was in advertising some years ago.


If you were stuck on a desert island, what would be the one thing you would have to have with you?
Ferry: It depends if there would be Wi-Fi on this island, but as I suspect there won't be, I would go for my spearfish set.
Jaap: I’m not that fond of white beaches, clear water and sunshine so I would opt for a Satellite Phone and relocation to Finland or bring MacGyver as a friend.


Sinke And Van Tongeren In The Studio


What are your three tips for being happy in life?
Ferry: Aim for being satisfied. Chasing happiness is unbearable and once you find it, it will be gone since happiness is never there to stay.
Jaap: Spend all your time and energy on what you like best instead of what other people want. There’s always someone who will appreciate that in a big way.


If you were only allowed one type of cuisine for the rest of your life, which would you choose?
Ferry: It would be Thai. Its healthy, tastes great and looks fantastic. The same goes for some kinds of Sushi but the Japanese kitchen somehow also produces the most disgusting things. So I'm very afraid to sign up for the Japanese cuisine as a whole.
Jaap: Anything you can catch with a hand axe will do. No need for fishing rods.


Do you have any quirky habits working in the studio?
Ferry: To many people each and every move I make in my studio can be quirky but to me there is nothing strange going on.
Jaap: Does talking to the animals qualify as quirky?


Sinke Van Tongeren In Motcomb Street


What’s the craziest/most unexpected art work you own?
Ferry: I love a knitted sweater made by Dutch artists Gumbah and Chantal Rens. The sweater has a knitted text sewed on it saying ‘ARBEIT MACHT FREI, MY ASS!’ I love it so much I would almost take it instead of the spearfish set and wear it on that desert island.
Jaap: I have a 1961 Austin Healey 3000 FIA Race Car that I built together with my father sitting in the garage. Dented and scratched after 20 years of international racing. It’s something different and a real work of art I think.


Tell us something we couldn’t guess about you…
Ferry: I have a closet full of national and international awards from my former career in advertising and I don’t give a fuck about it anymore.
Jaap: I used to be a woman.


Five Minutes With


Where’s your favourite place to hang out at the moment?
Ferry: My studio is my favourite place. I need to be there any moment I can. It really is a matter of so many plans, so little time. And I love to have all these weird and beautiful curiosities around me.
Jaap: I love to hang out at a great place. It not only has gigantic rooflights and is filled to the brim with weird stuff. It’s also the place where both our wives work for their antiques business while skinned tigers hang from chain hoists. Peter Greenaway would love it there and so do we. Our studio.


If you could describe your art in one sentence, what would it say?
Ferry: It's impossible to describe our photographic work and our taxidermy art in the same sentence. As far as the photography goes I would say its where sculpting, styling, 'hair'dressing and extravagance meets water ballet.
Jaap: ‘Arresting’


And finally, do you think art has the power to change the world?
Ferry: Politics is dead, the value of money is gone. So art is the only thing left to make a difference.
Jaap: A least it has the power to make it more special and beautiful. That must be worth a lot.