I doubted if I should categorize this article as Art or Hotspot, as it really is both. I decided to go with Hotspot, since this place definitely is one. Not only because Tommy'z Toko is famous for being a unique and creative salon, also because of the amazing mural that was recently done by artist Daan Roukens (in the picture above). Daan and Tommy invited me to the re-launch of the shop a couple of weeks ago, and ever since I could not wait to share this place with you. I have written about Daan Roukens' work before and truth is, that this talented artist keeps surprising me with his inspirational work. The mural for Tommy'z Toko is no exception. It is tight and outstanding in its apparent - but deceptive - simplicity.  

The mural by Daan Roukens is not the first mural Tommy Hagen - the owner of Tommy'z Toko - decided to put upon the fa├žade of his salon. 8 years ago another mural was rejected by Amsterdam's municipality as being too outspoken and provoking for neighbors to do the same to their homes. Luckily Amsterdam decided to give permission for the mural by Daan Roukens after a long 8 years of waiting en deliberating. Something which I am so excited about, since I think Amsterdam should radiate creativity and artistic freedom. 

Tommy'z Toko has already given a range of national and international artists a place to exhibit their work and is always looking for innovation. With this mural they give a new pulse to Amsterdam's up-and-coming neighborhood De Baarsjes. The shop is pretty close to my home, so I cross it at least three times a week. It is located right on the corner of the Admiraal de Ruijterweg and the Jan Evertsenstraat, which is the heart of experimental Amsterdam right now. 

The mural might remind you of the work of Sol LeWitt. It has got the same energy, strength and vibrance. Not a real coincidence since Tommy and Daan share the love for Sol LeWitt's oeuvre. Daan allowed himself to be inspired by the building, the neighborhood and the unique vibe of Tommy'z Toko though. Resulting in an intriguing geometric pattern, that you should really go and see for yourself. 

To me, this mural and collaboration between Daan Roukens and Tommy Hagen is a reflection of our time. True collaborations result in something which  an individual could never have created by himself. The added value of this collaboration lies in the fact that its product lies at the heart of Amsterdam's society. The art stands between us, not above us, and has already become part of our daily routine. It definitely makes me happy every time I cross Tommy'z Toko. 

Below you see a pretty cool video, in which Daan tells us about the creation of the mural. Go watch it and tell me what you think!

Happy weekend!

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Special thanks go out to Farrow and Ball for providing the paint for the mural and Ralph Roelse for making such a beautiful photo report. 

Check out Tommy'z Toko and No Rest For The Obsessed for more info about Tommy Hagen en Daan Roukens. 

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