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solo exhibition

Hugo Roelandt - Post(ume) Getuigenis

SA 23.04 — SA 18.06 2016

Hugo Roelandt, 1976

Opening event: SA 23.04 2016 20:00
+ reenactment of the performance Creatie van een Stuk, 1978, by Maria Degrève and musicians Kwinten Callens, David De Corte and Nikolaas Van Droogenbroeck.
+ testimonies by Roger D’Hondt, Marc Holthof and Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven.

In association with the New Reform Archive, Netwerk pays homage to performance artist, Hugo Roelandt (°1950 Aalst), who died on July 21, 2015. The exhibition focuses on the artist activities that he realised during the 70’s and 80’s in his hometown of Aalst.

In connection with this exhibition Netwerk provides a limited edition mimeographed publication, with among others, an interview with Hugo by Roger D’Hondt that appeared in the weekly magazine, De Voorpost, in 1977.

Hugo Roelandt studied at art schools in Aalst and Antwerp, where he was later to become a teacher of photography. In the seventies he created pioneering work as a performance and installation artist. He was picked up by the Aalst avant-garde art centre, New Reform, which had specifically chosen the direction of performance and installation art and where, in 1974, he made his debut as a performance artist. In 1973 he took part in the traveling group exhibition, “Creative Postcards”, with New Reform, which was shown, among other locations, at the University Institution of Antwerp (UIA).

Subsequent projects included performances in Düsseldorf (1976), Kassel (Stadtarchiv, 1977), Barcelona (Fundacio Juan Miro, 1986), Antwerp, (ICC repeatedly), during the Performance Art Festival at the Beursschouwburg in Brussels (1978), Kaaitheater (1979), and dozens of other locations. In 1987 he was selected for the Biennale of Middelheim in Antwerp.

The work of Hugo Roelandt has scientific and technological perspectives. His first photographic works were self-portraits in which he is depicted as a transvestite. They are the precursor to his later live performances. For the Middelheim Museum he made an installation with windshield wipers from cars that were set in motion in one of the park’s ponds. Several well-known musicians and artists worked together with him. In recent years, some of his performances have been revived.

Hugo Roelandt Research Project

In consultation with Lydia Van Loock, Hugo’s wife, the Antwerp Academy decided to consolidate the archives of the artist and use them as a platform for research about the artist and performance art in Belgium. The M HKA will preserve the archives and make them public. A website will be launched where in-depth research is being presented by different partners. The New Reform archives support this initiative.

Objectif Exhibitions is showing two exhibitions with of work by Hugo Roelandt. The first exhibition: Hugo Roelandt: Let’s Expand the Sky – in Black and White runs from April 16 to June 4, 2016, in Antwerp.

Argos takes initiative for the digitization and distribution of a vast amount of videotapes. Also, the Middelheim Museum is planning to realise some presentations from Hugo Roelandt. M HKA organizes with the Archive of Montevideo (in the same period as the exhibitions in Objectif), two documentary exhibitions about Montevideo, the alternative space where he was one of the founders.