The Missing U
Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp.
The art of Christoph Terlinden revolves around deceptively simple actions with far-reaching, even radical (aesthetic) consequences. When invited by M HKA, some years ago, to reshape the mental space between the museum and its audience, Terlinden’s proposed to drop the letter ‘U’ from the M HKA acronym (one among many such onomatopoeic names now popular in the museum world), thus making the museum’s name effectively impossible to pronounce. The void in between the letters ‘M’ and ‘H’ thereby became the space of delirious projection, a free zone for the museum’s own de-institutionalizing thought – a vision not easily realized in a world encumbered by factual, managerial considerations. (Financial and practical limitations also hampered the realization of another such proposal by Terlinden, which would have seen the entire museum painted in a certain "Swedish slipper green" color – effectively the color of the artist’s slippers, somewhere midway between ‘proper’ green and true blue, depending on the quality of the daylight.)
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The M HKA’s contemporary art collection has grown thanks to a combination of acquisitions, donations and long-term loans from various public