ANTWERP | FOMU photography museum reopens on 16 February 2023

Presently FOMU, Antwerp‘s photography museums is closed for renovations and installing three new exhibitions. FOMU will reopen on Thursday 16 February 2023 for special guests and reopen for the general public on Friday 17 February.

The museum at Waalsekaai is preparing new exhibitions. These are…

Grace Ndiritu Reimagines the FOMU Collection

For ‘Grace Ndiritu Reimagines the FOMU Collection‘, British-Kenyan artist Grace Ndiritu constructs an original photographic universe of paintings, textiles and interior design inspired by female artists O’Keeffe, Modotti and Albers. It represents a radical and holistic reinterpretation of the classic collection exhibition.

Ndiritu’s photographic installation ‘A Quest for Meaning: Painting as a Medium of Photography‘ (2014) formed the springboard for her exploration of the FOMU Collection and the ensuing exhibition. 

Ndiritu uses free association to combine photographs and coloured walls. Her surprising amalgams give fresh meaning to works by, among others, Alexandre, Bianca Baldi, Samuel Bourne, Dirk Braeckman, Alvin Langdon Coburn, Lynne Cohen, Gilbert Fastenaekens, Gertrude Fehr, Geert Goiris, Willy Kessels, Rinko Kawauchi, Man Ray, Auguste Salzmann, Filip Tas, Nadine Tasseel and Wolfgang Tillmans.

A highlight of the FOMU Collection, the ‘Keizerpanorama‘ will also be on display after undergoing a complete restoration and has been integrated into the design of Ndiritu’s show. 

The device was a modern piece of automated machinery when it was made in 1905 and presented a 3D photographic spectacle to the public. Twenty-five people at a time can sit on stools circling the viewing cabinet and enjoy the magic of three-dimensional images.

Susan Meiselas – Meditations

For nearly five decades, Magnum photographer Susan Meiselas (United States, 1948) has been using her camera to bear witness and to connect with people. Meiselas has travelled the world and tackled a wide range of subjects, from the sex industry to war and human rights violations.

She draws attention to what is often hidden or ignored by the public. Susan Meiselas continually seeks direct contact and dialogue with the people she portrays. Her approach is collaborative and incorporates her subjects’ perspectives.

Meiselas’ work is driven by urgent questions about who photographs serve, not only what they show.

Today, Meiselas is considered to have paved the way for both photography that is politically engaged, systematically documented, reflected on and contextualised, and that which closely involves the subjects in the work.

Melanie Bonajo – ‘When The Body Says Yes’

When The Body Says Yes‘ is an immersive video installation by Melanie Bonajo (The Netherlands, 1978). The artist believes that touch can be a powerful remedy for the loneliness that has become endemic in our society.

Bonajo brought together a group of international genderqueer people, many with a bicultural identity, to cast a collective spell in the form of a pleasure-positive camp where “skinship” is celebrated. Do you know the sensual dimensions of your “No”? How do you feel when your body says “Yes”? When the body says Yes is a gentle invitation to let yourself be transported on a journey of discovery.

Melanie Bonajo (they / them) is an artist, filmmaker, sexological bodyworker, somatic sex coach and educator, hug workshop leader, and activist. Their videos, performances, photographs and installations investigate topical issues arising from the capitalism system. Bonajo spotlights themes such as isolation and the erosion of intimacy in an increasingly sterile, technological world. They then provide anti-capitalist methods for reconnecting and for rediscovering sexuality, intimacy and feelings.

Art and museums in Antwerp

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