Artist: Jan Fabre
Venue: M HKA, Antwerp
Exhibition Title: Stigmata, Actions & Performances 1976-2013
Date: April 24 – September 26, 2015
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of M HKA, Antwerp
M HKA has a permanent commitment to Jan Fabre. The museum bases its exploration of the artist’s work on his performances, which can be considered as the ‘primal source’ of all his other work. This was also the approach of the double project on Fabre realised together with the Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp (KMSKA) in 2006, Homo Faber. The section presented at the KMSKA led to the exhibition Ange de la métamorphose at the Louvre in Paris in 2008 and will be presented next year in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. The M HKA presentation was given an impressive sequel in the exhibition which Fabre realised in 2013 together with the legendary curator Germano Celant in the MAXXI in Rome: Stigmata, Actions & Performances 1976-2013. This exhibition is now coming to M HKA, and will travel from Antwerp to other venues. M HKA is the main lender for this exhibition, which presents all the performances of the artist in a special arrangement.
Stigmata presents an overview of the performances of Jan Fabre in an entirely unique manner. The exhibitional approach is a radical extension of the presentational mode of the work Objects to break in and to fight: instruments from performances presented on tables with glass tops on trestles. In Stigmata, the presentation has turned into a veritable sea of dozens of tables upon which are collected memories of performances in the most diverse of ways; by means of the objects used Fabre, or the scale models he calls ‘thought models’, as well as drawings, photos and all sorts materials that could be considered of ‘documentary value’. These disparate items regain, in this setup, a great sense of immediacy as the viewer is confronted with ever new impressions through the immediate, physical closeness with the tables and that which is presented upon it.
Here and there, figures emerge from the sea of tables, the costumes used in his performances. This exhibition also invades the surfaces of the walls in an imposing manner and presents, along with thirty or so film and video recordings and quotes from Fabre’s Nachtboeken, ensembles of monumental photographs that have become images in and of themselves, as well as the famous BIC floor cloths from the M HKA collection. Stigmata, Actions & Performances 1976-2013 is a generous, lively overview that is not intended as an exhibition, but rather as a presentation whose powerful format allows the performances to come alive and be rediscovered again.
Curator: Germano Celant
Link: Jan Fabre at M HKA