August 11, 1956 - born in Leiden | residing in Rotterdam

1969 - 1976 - pre-university education in Leiden | June 18, 1976 - diploma high school / Atheneum-a

1979-1983 - academy of visual arts in Rotterdam | March 24, 1983 - diploma 'drawing, painting and graphic art' (TSO)

independent visual artist, graphic designer, web designer, light- & set designer, theater maker, performer, poet, publisher, editor, curator, teacher, producer of art events

Visual art

The conceptual œuvre of Arnold Schalks is rooted in language. With his work he dissects contexts in order to re-construct the connection between customs, notions, words, materials, objects and, after all, between people. His mainly site specific art works contain elements derived from the locations' environs, culture and dialect. Arnold Schalks commits himself to matching the art work's elements on as many levels as possible, to somehow make them 'rhyme'. His ideas develop into props, stage designs, installations, performances or interventions, often presented in public space. Arnold Schalks' works were presented in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Spain, France, England, Canada, Russia, the United States, Lithuania and Suriname.


From 1997 to 2001, Schalks produced three musictheater performances for foundation Bühne de BovenLucht in a former factory building at the Rotterdam Keileweg: Uitzicht, Brandschat and Recombinant. From 2003 on, Schalks is engaged in the stage design of several Dutch and foreign (music-)theater productions, often in cooperation with the Dutch director David Prins. In the period 2004 - 2005 Schalks organized six interdisciplinary manifestations with a theatrical component in ‘art space’ de Vrije Schuur (the Free Shed), a small log cabin in the backyard of his apartment in the Rotterdam district het Oude Noorden. His removal in 2009 to a studio space at the Rotterdam Osseweistraat offered him the opportunity to start a stage for small scale events: OCW (a corruption of the word Ossewei). He initiated crimmp (= creative reduction in the multi media practice), a series of performances in which reduction is interpreted as a surplus value. Seven years later, the venue moved to a classroom on the ground floor of a former elementary school at the Drievriendenstraat 26.

'Small-scale' and 'hospitality' are the catchwords for the three initiatives that operate exclusively in the margins of the art industry.

Bühne de BovenLucht, de Vrije Schuur and stage OCW are activities of foundation Bühne de BovenLucht, founded in 1997.