Museum in Motion - Lili Dujourie
M HKA, Antwerp
16 September 2022 - 08 January 2023
Since the late 1960s, Lili Dujourie has developed an independent artistic stance among her peers, one that freely, consistently and precisely moves between abstraction and figuration, ornamentation and minimalism. She creates video, collage, photography and sculpture, with a strong sense of medium specificity and an understanding of opening up art disciplines. Her earliest works were steel and coloured sculptures, but she shifted into photography and video in the 1970s. The five versions of Hommage à… (1972) launched a series of black and white videos, considered to be seminal feminist works. They captured the artist’s naked body in motion and reflected on the representation of the female body throughout art history and in the present day. In 1976, Dujourie made approximately twenty-five collages entitled Still Life, in which she expressed the need to distance herself from her performative videos. The series simultaneously marks a moment and a movement. The works are not cut, but torn, implying a violent but quiet physicality and intimacy. Time is central to Dujourie’s work: not only the time of concentration and decision making, but also the time of transformation. In the artist’s own words, “life is change”.
In 1976, Dujourie had a solo exhibition at M HKA’s predecessor organisation, the International Cultural Centre (ICC). Her work is represented in M HKA’s collection by an ensemble of video works, collages and sculptures, amongst which is the renowned sculptural installation American Imperialism (1972).
This autumn, the first public commission by the artist will be unveiled on top of one of the two historical pedestals bestriding the monumental steps of the Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp. Dujourie’s ambitious bronze sculpture offers a contemporary counterpart to De Faam (van de kunst) by Léon Mignon, which has stood alone on the right-hand pedestal since the origins of the museum.