|Type 42 (Anonymous), Denise Nicholas, mixed media on polaroid, 1960s - 1970s, 8,3 x 10,8 cm. Courtesy of Delmes & Zander, Berlin + Cologne.|
Last week saw the very first edition of New York’s Independent art fair abroad, breathing some fresh air into Brussels’ art fair landscape with an edgy and laid-back approach. With a much more breezy set-up than the traditional “booth-after-booth, hallway-after-hallway” structure, the Independent experience felt more like visiting a curated biennale show than a capitalist shopping spree. The democratic attitude was also reflected in the fair’s non-existent entry price, and the combination of heavy hitters such as David Zwirner and Gladstone with up-and-coming spaces as for instance Dürst Britt & Mayhew, which opened in The Hague only last year. The overall openness even extended to after-fair hours when a party at Jan de Cock’s Brussels Art Institute was publicly communicated through Instagram and Facebook for everyone to come. Here are five outstanding shows that truly made Independent Brussels an unforgettable experience, as selected by Evelyn Simons.
Writer Evelyn Simons
1. Delmes & Zander – Cologne/Berlin
Delmes & Zander presented “OTHER/one – Portraits”, a sequence to “ONE/other – Self Portraits” exhibited at Independent New York earlier this year. The selection of works offered a remarkable and intimate view of subject-object relationships by exploring obsessive artists’ uncontrollable desires towards their muses. “Sleeping Beauties” by Paul Humphrey for instance pictured vulnerable women with their eyes shut, an attempt to take control over the objects of his desire."
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