"Close up on Belgian contemporary art": art exhibition at Degroof Petercam Luxembourg

"Close up on Belgian contemporary art": art exhibition at Degroof Petercam Luxembourg

In partnership with the Ixelles Museum (Brussels), from 29 September to 29 October 2021

Open Days on registration on events-degroofpetercam.lu: 2, 10, 16 and 24 October.

In line with its policy of promoting the world of art, an essential element of cultural heritage, Banque Degroof Petercam Luxembourg is pleased to present its new major exhibition in partnership with the Ixelles Museum in Brussels.

After the exhibition of unpublished photographs of Keith Haring, taken by his artist friend Tseng Kwong Chi, and an exhibition of Isabelle de Borchgrave in 2019, Degroof Petercam Luxembourg is hosting this time, in its buildings at the Cloche d'Or, an exhibition mounted in partnership with the Ixelles Museum, a museum entirely dedicated to Belgian art.

This exhibition, which will be held from 29 September to 29 October 2021 and is entitled "Close up on Belgian contemporary art", coincides with the 150th anniversary of Degroof Petercam, a Group that has always supported artistic creation in Belgium and Luxembourg through institutions such as BOZAR, SMAK, MUKHA, MDD, Musée Van Buuren, Boverie and, since January 2021, the Mudam in Luxembourg

This exhibition will present a selection of works acquired in recent years by the Ixelles Museum, which is currently undergoing expansion and renovation work, with the prospect of reopening by 2024. Some of these works will be presented to the public for the first time.

Degroof Petercam Luxembourg will open its doors free of charge to allow art lovers to come and admire these works of art during 4 open days in October (Saturdays 2 and 16 and Sundays 10 and 24). In addition, the bank will allow pupils and students from schools and universities in Luxembourg to discover these unique works.

The Ixelles Museum

The Ixelles Museum was founded in 1892 with a donation from a Belgian artist, Edmond de Praetere, an animal painter of the time. From that moment on, the common thread running through the collections - whether through donations, bequests or purchases - has always been active and significant contemporary art in Belgium. With the passing of time, the collections have inevitably become more "historic", offering a very broad panorama of Belgian art from the second half of the 19th century to the present day, with some 12,000 works conserved to date. Of course, the collection also includes "happy accidents": non-Belgian artists who arrived by chance, such as Joan Miro or Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, whose complete collection of original posters the museum holds, or a "bubble" of ancient art from the 15th and 17th centuries, which was added by the Léon Gauchez bequest.

The acquisition policy of the Ixelles Museum has never been interrupted for nearly 130 years. Acquisitions are regular, thanks in particular to a determined and very active municipal policy in this area. This regular dynamic, based on very precise selection criteria, has enabled the museum's collection to become one of the most important in Belgium and to ensure that it has an international reputation. 

Focus on some of the works that will be exhibited in the premises of Degroof Petercam in Luxembourg

The exhibition at Degroof Petercam Luxembourg will highlight recent acquisitions by Belgian artists such as Marcel Berlanger, Sophie Kuijken, Stephan Balleux, Sammy Baloji and Anne De Gelas.

Marcel Berlanger will be present with his work " Méduse Orpheline " acquired in 2013. The artist plays with real images, like here a photograph of Naomi Watts in the movie King Kong, an image he then puts back into paint. He then likes to pierce his images to play with the integration of the artwork into its surrounding world. He thus creates a breakthrough between the world of painting and the world of reality.

The work "E.K." by Sophie Kuijken was acquired in 2019. It is a portrait that is significant for the perennial nature of the portrait genre, balancing a character that is both classical (a very realistic pictorial technique demonstrating a mastery worthy of the old masters) while inducing a temporal strangeness in the integration of contemporary and disruptive elements in the approach (in this case the underwear and the squirrel).

Stephan Balleux was acquired in 2008 with a piece entitled "Paintingpainting#16" which is emblematic of his questioning of the act of painting, the status of painting and of the artist-painter in a societal context where the profusion of images leads to a loss of reference points and questions in this regard.

Sammy Baloji's " Portrait 3 : groupe de femmes Urua " is also an important work in that it bears witness to the artist's questioning of collective memory and historical re-appropriation, specifically with regard to Belgium's colonial past. Through an artistic reinterpretation of colonial archive documents, Sammy Baloji invites us to take a critical and questioning look at these notions at the heart of our current societies. This young artist has achieved exemplary international recognition.

Composed of several photographs, the acquisition of Anne De Gelas was also made in 2019. Anne De Gelas deals with themes that are as personal as they are universal, relating to femininity, fragility, intimacy, maternity, the transience of everyday life... Of course, many artists address these issues... So why does one artist rather than another enter the collections? Because the panoramic analysis and the expertise of a commission allows us to understand and capture the artists who have achieved the highest quality of artistic reflection and work.

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