Published in 2014 on Juliette Jongma
In a quiet residential street, about a 15-minute walk from Tilburg central station, Just Quist's studio is located in a former classroom of a small elementary school. A teacher answers the door, and when I tell him whom I'm there to visit, he vaguely points the way while trying to control his students running to the playground outside. It appears to be 'somewhere in the back' so I pass through the lobby that houses some wooden furniture and books, walk through the folding door and end up in a hallway that leads to a small gymnasium. I feel like the big, friendly giant in these miniature surroundings and I can't help but wonder if this unusual environment affects the artist and his work; Schools are often places of memory, but not necessarily of reflection. When I knock on the door, I'm once again reminded of Quist's impressive stature. He offers me tea that he prepares in his tiny studio kitchen where the sink hits his tall frame on knee level, and we start talking.
Rene Joffe, what will be the show's title, comes to the surface quite literally in several moments throughout the selected pieces. The initials are turned into a work themselves or intervene other existing pieces. I catch myself wondering about their symbolic meaning when I realize they might just 'merely' be a random assortment of letters that automatically manoeuvre your mind into thinking this has to have a reference. Some works are lying on the floor, others hang on the wall. There are monochrome geometric paintings, either in a rectangular or diamond shape of which some are plain steel and others are brightly coloured and textured.