Tuesday, September 15, 2015

new among the old

Ghent is very good indeed at integrating new design among its historical past - witness its Design Museum, which (despite not having the Art Nouveau stuff that I'd wanted to see on display - getting ready for a show) was made more than worthwhile by all the modern pieces that they'd integrated - sometimes seamlessly, sometimes with a deliberate clash of temperament, in their general furniture rooms.  The message - although never turned into didacticism, except through a tacit understanding that one would use one's own eyes - was that there's a certain continuity in line and form, even if the material may be utterly different.

And then there was a huge ceramic vase in the courtyard outside, with a wooden chair atop a structure, looking at it.

Way down by the station, there was a really good retrospective of Lili Dujourie's work (part 2 of this is in Ostend, which isn't exactly on my route anywhere) - which is all full of folds, and pleats, and materials with slices through them, or collage pieces torn up and put on vast empty sheets of white paper, or, as below, Maelstrom 1-5 are sculptures in papier maché, recalling baroque swirls and whirlpools.  This view (and others that I took) isn't actually available to sight, unless one's a giraffe - I stretched the camera out and pointed downwards.  In the same room were a whole lot of velvet sculptures, suggesting but not describing something underneath - another of them was across the road in the fine art museum - MSK Ghent, which also has a terrific collection of C19th Belgian art - in the old masters section - and this is her Magdendale - more new among old.

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