Jens Hoffmann and Piper Marshall Will Curate an Exhibition for Art Brussels 2017

The show will feature personal items of artists like Robert Barry, Larry Clark, and Jenny Holzer.

Jens Hoffmann & Piper Marshall. Courtesy Art Brussels.

Art Brussels is turning 35 this year, and the fair is preparing a unique exhibition to commemorate this landmark edition, which takes place from April 21-23.

Organized by Jens Hoffmann, director of exhibitions at New York’s Jewish Museum, and the independent curator and critic Piper Marshall, the artistic project titled “Mementos: Artists’ Souvenirs, Artifacts, and other Curiosities,” will be on display within the fair.

However, rather than artworks, this unusual show will feature a collection of very personal objects belonging to a group of over 50 artists, all represented by galleries participating at the 2017 edition of the fair.

Artists in the show include Robert Barry, Eric Baudelaire, Larry Clark, Jenny Holzer, Folkert de Jong, Joseph Kosuth, Germaine Kruip, Jonathan Monk, and Hermann Nitsch.

Objects chosen by Andrea Éva Győri. Courtesy Art Brussels.

Objects chosen by Andrea Éva Győri. Courtesy Art Brussels.

Among the objects on display is a book kept by Josephine Meckseper from an ex-boyfriend who’s a descendant of Victor Hugo; a bottle of sandy water collected by Kendell Geers; and a small bell without a clapper acquired by Kris Martin as a child, and which inspired his major work currently installed at the Walker Art Center.

“The personal objects offer singular emotional connections that might perhaps only resonate with one particular person. By inserting dissonances into the economies of art, the presentation offers an important line of inquiry into why, how, what, and when we collect,” Hoffman said in a statement.

“Often we keep objects for personal reasons, for their gauge of our identity formation, for their marking of passed time, or for their status in relationship to a period in life,” said Marshall.

“With this project, we investigate whether there are any links between the artists’ individual practices and these valued objects, which have been entrusted to us for the exhibition. We wanted to bring to life the stories of the artists participating in Art Brussels, through the objects they collect.”

Installation view of the exhibition "Cabinet d’Amis: The Accidental Collection of Jan Hoet" at Art Brussels 2016. Photo Lorena Muñoz-Alonso.

Installation view of the exhibition “Cabinet d’Amis: The Accidental Collection of Jan Hoet” at Art Brussels 2016. Photo Lorena Muñoz-Alonso.

This major non-commercial show staged alongside the fair follows the successful exhibition devised by Katerina Gregos for the 2016 edition of Art Brussels: “Cabinet d’Amis: The Accidental Collection of Jan Hoet.”

Gathering works by artists including Joseph Beuys, Marcel Broodthaers, Mario Merz, Marisa Merz, Cady Noland, and Luc Tuymans among others, the exhibition was a touching homage to Hoet, a key figure in the Belgian contemporary art scene, who died in 2014.

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