This Autumn, MoMu will present the exhibition "Soft? Tactile Dialogues" on location at the Maurice Verbaet Center in Antwerp. This will mark the first time that MoMu takes its focus away from fashion to textiles.
In the 1960s and '70s, many feminist, post-minimalist, and fibre artists found their way to textiles. They were attracted to the aesthetic possibilities, structural potential, and semiotic power of this "soft" material, such as the Belgian artists Veerle Dupont, Suzannah Olieux and Liberta Ferket. Although these artists often worked at the margins of the art world, their continual efforts were crucial for textiles to become an accepted medium in contemporary art.
In "Soft?", MoMu will present work by this first generation for the first time in dialogue with contemporary artists such as Kati Heck, Nel Aerts, Anton Cotteleer, Sven ‘t Jolle, Klaas Rommelaere, Christoph Hefti, Stéphanie Baechler, Ermias Kifleyesus, and Kirstin Arndt.
This younger generation expresses themselves unapologetically and freely in textiles, often combined with other media. This sense of freedom is owed to the battle fought by that first generation, as well the changing perception of art criticism where the quality of an artwork has little to do with style or medium, but all to do with artistic intention.
"Soft?" is about the freedom with which artists move between various media, about unexpected textile applications, about tactility and aversion, about the textures and the skin of sculptures.
MoMu will present this exhibition on location at the Maurice Verbaet Center, an art centre dedicated to (re)discovering Belgian modern art produced during and after the war. Its 1960s architecture, monumental stairwell and art gallery form an impressive backdrop for the exhibition.
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