Rive Roshan’s solo show at Museum Jan in Amstelveen, the Netherlands, is a series of ‘reflective moments of manufactured nature’.

Key features 

Shifting Perspectives was created in a year like no other. The solo exhibition by design and art studio Rive Roshan – on show at Museum Jan in Amstelveen, near Amsterdam, through 29 August 2021 – was developed during the course of the pandemic. A time when the things many of us tend to turn to for creative inspiration – travel and cultural happenings – were more or less off the table. Inspiration could still be found, of course, just in less obvious places. 

It’s this phenomenon that Ruben de la Rive Box and Golnar Roshan explore in Shifting Perspectives, a combination of existing and site-specific works that also respond to the museum’s modernist architecture. As the duo sees it: ‘We’re living in a time where nothing is really what we expected or how we perceived. This exhibition challenges your perception in many ways, while also presenting a series of “ordinary miracles” in the form of small details – intricacies you may not have noticed before, such as light bouncing off water through the window onto a wall.’  

Described as ‘reflective moments of manufactured nature’, the result references both the museum’s vast collection of glass and the material’s ubiquity in human-made space. Rive Roshan dissects the different qualities and natural properties associated with glass – from the sand used in its formation to the way light refracts through it – to explore our relationship with nature in urban environments. ‘In a year where we’ve spent the majority of time indoors,’ they say, ‘viewers are encouraged to invite nature in.’ 

Frame’s take 

From 5 June, museums in the Netherlands – including Museum Jan – can reopen their doors after a long, lonely winter. It’s a bit of a Catch-22 that shows like Shifting Perspectives couldn’t be seen while museums were closed, but the idea of finding unexpected beauty in the ordinary might have less impact now that the world is beginning to reopen. In any case, as De la Rive Box and Roshan say, the past year has made us look for inspiration elsewhere – in the small details that surround us. Since it’s possible to purchase Rive Roshan products, perhaps more people will be looking to add such moments of wonder into their residences.