7th Biennial of Painting at Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens

Artists: Mamma Andersson, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Léon De Smet, Gust. De Smet, James Ensor, Melissa Gordon, Suchan Kinoshita & Olivier Foulon, Marie-Fleur Lefebvre, Lucy McKenzie, Walid Raad, Maaike Schoorel, Chris Huen Sin-Kan, Louis Thevenet, Luc Tuymans, Rik Wouters

Exhibition title: 7th Biennial of Painting, Binnenskamers (Huis clos, Inner Spaces)

Venue: Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Deurle, Belgium

Date: July 26 – October 18, 2020

Photography: Rik Vannevel / images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens

From 26 July to 18 October 2020, the three visual art museums at the banks of the Leie —Museum of Deinze and the Leie Region (Mudel), Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens in collaboration with Sint-Martens-Latem, and Roger Raveel Museum — join forces to present the 7th edition of the Biennial of Painting. World renowned artists such as Roger Raveel, Raoul De Keyser, Emile Claus, Chantal Akerman, Jan Vercruysse, Rik Wouters and Luc Tuymans are combined with up-and-coming names such as Joëlle Dubois, Bendt Eyckermans and Sarah De Vos.

Under the title Binnenskamers (Huis clos, Inner Spaces), this edition of the Biennial focuses on the interior within the tradition of art history and contemporary practice. Traditionally, the interior forms the backdrop for a scene, the shell of a story — a frame within a frame. The interior conceals as much as it reveals. It exists within the limits of its own intimacy and security. Yet any ‘inside’ presupposes an ‘outside’.

Although the subject of ‘Inner Spaces’ was chosen long before the outbreak of the Corona virus, it takes on a particularly powerful resonance in the wake of the confinement with which much of the world has been confronted. The borders separating the public from the private collapse into various forms of digital collectivities and intimacies, opening up new hybrid spaces between domestic life, work and leisure. When our line of sight is limited to the dimensions of our windows and computer screens, and the world outside seems to be framed as a virtual reality, the question of what can legitimately pass as ‘interior’ becomes pressing.

Each partner institution in the Biennial of Painting adopts a distinctive approach to this question, while sharing a common framework: works drawn from their own collections enter into dialogue with paintings on loan from public and private collections, as well as with contemporary artworks. In a Biennial first, Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens collaborates with Sint-Martens-Latem to curate displays in various sites of the municipality, including the Gust de Smet Museum and the Gemeentehuis. As has been the case the previous editions, both Mudel and Roger Raveel Museum present a combination of works from their own collection next to loans from connected private and public collections, as well as recent work by contemporary artists.