The collection IX – Autumn 2004


MuHKA, Antwerpen

28 August 2004 - 14 November 2004

This season, the new media are centre stage in the collection presentation.

They are a focus of attention in the M HKA collection policy for various reasons. The museum has its roots in the Internationaal Cultureel Centrum in Antwerp (I.C.C., International Cultural Centre), the birthplace of video art in Belgium. In addition, last year the M HKA merged with the Centrum voor Beeldcultuur (Centre for Visual Culture) and thus made questioning the new media a basic objective. 

In this presentation, specific attention is paid to the audiovisual work of the Canadian artist Mark Lewis (°1957). The M HKA committed itself to Lewis' work and is now showing “The Pitch” and “A Sense of the End”. In “The Pitch” Lewis – exceptionally in the centre of the picture himself – focuses on the film industry as such, more particularly on the (low) status of some employees 'in the business’. It might also be called an ode to the extra. “A Sense of the End” is especially interesting since it was originally made on 16-mm stock, while his recent films are typically 35-mm film products. Moreover, since most of Lewis' works are limited editions, “A Sense of the End” is a unique work, as is the second early key creation “Two Impossible Films”, which was acquired by the Centre Pompidou in Paris.

A second point of focus within the presentation of the collection of the M HKA are the photographs realised by Maarten Vanden Abeele (1970). Maarten Vanden Abeele studied design and communication, afterwards concentrated on stage-directing, yet had his breakthrough as a photographer. In 1996, he realised a photo album about the dance company of Pina Bausch, which, up until now, remains his most well-known work. In 2000, Maarten Vanden Abeele had a one-man show at the M HKA which did not only feature photography, but spatial installations as well. The M HKA acquired a collection of recent photographs which occupies a central position within the presentation of the collection. This ensemble of eleven colour photographs is representative of the essence of the artistic demarche of Maarten Vanden Abeele, as well as of the manner in which he approaches the way to photograph reality. The ensemble is a representative materialisation of the way in which the artist thinks; the latter is based on establishing loose associations.

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