In Focus: The Disappearance of Bas Jan Ader

Click here to find the documentary or the monograph in the GSA Library collection.

Bas Jan Ader disappeared at sea in 1975 while attempting to sail from the east coast of the United States to Europe as part of a project titled In Search of the Miraculous. The circumstances of his disappearance have led many interpreters to identify Ader with the role of the tragic romantic hero. This identification has obscured the fact that Ader’s art was a critical investigation of precisely those romantic motives his persona has now come to be associated with. In Jan Verwoert’s book, Bas Jan Ader: In Search of the Miraculous, [MIT Press/Afterall Books, 2006]  the critic interrogates the specific ways in which Ader’s cycle of works explores those motives with an artistic approach that is as conceptual and analytic as it is poetic and existential. Here Is Always Somewhere Else is a critically acclaimed documentary by Rene Daalder which reflects on Bas Jan Ader, the situation of contemporary art and the strong pull of the ocean.


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