ENGLISH JAPANESE

CURRENT EXHIBITION

TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013) BY JAN FABRE

JULY 9TH - SEPTEMBER 23RD 2015

Espace Louis Vuitton Tokyo is delighted to welcome world-renowned contemporary Belgian artist Jan Fabre for its 13th exhibition, entitled Tribute to Hieronymus Bosch in Congo (2011–2013), in which the artist will show for the first time in Japan an eminent selection of mosaics with the shields of jewel beetles.

This exhibition draws its inspiration from the harsh colonial policy Fabre’s homeland of Belgium imposed upon Congo in the 19th century. Fabre has represented the “darkness” hidden behind policies such as slavery and the looting of gold and gambling that contributed to Belgian civilization, using the fables and lessons contained in the triptych Garden of Earthly Delights, painted by the early Netherlandish master Hieronymus Bosch.

Six kaleidoscopic mosaics from Tribute to Hieronymus Bosch in Congo (2011-2013) are complemented with four skulls and four bird sculptures, recently created, to amplify the iconography of the works. A total of 14 artworks with the shiny green wings of the scarab beetle reflect the light shining into the glass cube of Espace Louis Vuitton Tokyo and transform it into a space that displays not only the superficial beauty of the artworks but also a deep darkness hidden behind them.

Espace Louis Vuitton Tokyo expresses its thanks and gratitude to Jan Fabre for bringing the light and darkness into our space and to ANGELOS, his studio in Belgium, and Galerie Templon, his gallery in Paris, for their unwavering support during the preparation of the exhibition.

ARTIST

© Angelos bvba
Photo: Stephan Vanfleteren

Jan Fabre

For more than thirty-five years, Jan Fabre (b. Antwerp, 1958) has occupied a leading position as a ground breaking visual artist, theatre maker and author. His innovative and diverse work gained him international recognition. In the late seventies he took courses at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts and the Municipal Institute of Decorative Arts and Crafts, both in Antwerp.

He has become well known to a wide audience with the Tivoli castle (1990), Heaven of Delight (2002), in which he covered the ceiling of the Mirror Room at the Royal Palace in Brussels with jewel beetle wing-shields, his open-air sculptures, including The man who measures the clouds (1998), Searching for Utopia (2003) and Totem (2000-2004). He also made artworks for the Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature, Paris (The Night of Diana, 2007) and the ZOO of Antwerp (A tribute to Mieke, the tortoise & A tribute to Janneke, the tortoise, both 2012) and his recent installation of The Gaze Within (The Hour Blue) (2011 – 2013) in the Royal Staircase of the Museum of Fine Arts (Brussels) next to the permanent display of the wax and bronze self-portraits, Chapters I – XVIII (2010)

Drawings, sculptures, objects, installations, films, performances, thinking models and others: all the visual art works by Jan Fabre make reference to a belief in the vulnerable body and its defence, plus an observation of man and asking the question of how he can survive in the future. This fascination with the body and science originated in his youth, when, influenced by the research carried out by the entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre (1823-1915), there was nothing he liked more than to study the world of insects and other creatures, even dissecting their tiny bodies and transforming them into new creatures.

Metamorphosis is a key concept in any approach to Jan Fabre’s artistic course, in which human and animal existence are constantly interacting. This led him to the portrayal of the sensual and the spiritual body; the creation of a variety of deathless bodies resistant to the natural cycles of growth and decay. His work as an artist is a poetic act of resistance under the flag of beauty, an exercise in disappearance or a celebration of life as a preparation for death. Over the years he has shaped his own world with its laws and rules, and recurring characters, symbols and motifs.

Know from solo-exhibtions such as Homo Faber (KMSKA, Antwerp, 2006), Hortus / Corpus (Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterlo (2011) and Stigmata. Actions and Performances 1976 – 2013 (MAXXI, Rome, 2013, M HKA, Antwerp, 2015). He was the first living artist to present his work at the Louvre, Paris (L’Ange de la métamorphose, 2008). The well-known series of The Hour Blue (1977-1992) was shown in the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna (2011), in the Musée d’Art Moderne of Saint-Etienne (2012) and in the Busan Museum of Art (2013). His research about ‘the most sexy part of the body’ the brain was presented in the solo-shows Anthropology of a planet (Palazzo Benzon, Venice, 2007), From the Cellar to the Attic. From the Feet to the Brain (Kunsthaus Bregenz, 2008; Arsenale Novissimo, Venice, 2009), PIETAS (Nuova Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Misericordia, Venice, 2011; Parloods Park Spoor Noord, Antwerp, 2012) . The recent series of mosaics Tribute to Hieronymus Bosch in Congo (2011 – 2013) and Tribute to Belgian Congo (2010 – 2013) were already shown at the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Lille (2013) and the PinchukArtCentre in Kiev (2013). In 2016 the exhibition will be shown in Den Bosch as part of the festivities of 500 years Jheronimus Bosch. Futhermore, Jan Fabre received an official invitations to create a large scale exhibitions both at the State Hermitage Museum in St-Petersburg and at the Musée Océanographique in Monaco in 2016.

ARTWORKS

THE CIVILIZING COUNTRY OF BELGIUM (2015)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm

Photo: Pat verbruggen
© Angelos bvba

GAMBLE WITH DEATH (2011)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm

Photo: Pat verbruggen
© Angelos bvba

THE POT CALLS THE KETTLE BLACK (2012)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm

Photo: Pat verbruggen
© Angelos bvba

THE SHROUD OF THE BELGIAN CONGO (2013)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

THE ART OF THE COLONIES (2013)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

(tryptich)
VENTURING ON SLIPPERY IRON (2013)

From the series: TRIBUTE TO HIERONYMUS BOSCH IN CONGO (2011-2013)

Jewel beetle wing-cases on wood
227.5 x 173 x 8.1 cm (3 times)

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

SKULL WITH POKER HAND (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, carton
22 x 19 x 28 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

SKULL WITH THE TOOL OF POWER (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, silver
42 x 16 x 21 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

SKULL WITH MACHETE I (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, iron, wood
24 x 40 x 55 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

SKULL WITH ICE SKATE (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, iron, wood, fabric
27 x 23 x 21 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

THE PECKER AT THE SAP OF LIFE (2015)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, stuffed bird
100 x 18 x 23 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

DIVINE FERTILITY (2015)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, stuffed bird
126 x 37 x 67 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

THE PLUNDERING HERALD OF LIFE AND DEATH (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, stuffed bird
37 x 20 x 45 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

THE PLUNDERING MESSENGER OF PARADISE (2013)

Mixture of jewel beetle wing-cases, polymers, stuffed bird
66 x 65 x 24 cm

Photo: Lieven Herreman
© Angelos bvba

HEAVEN OF DELIGHT. A Royal Commission

RUBRIEK 700, CANVAS 2002
Broadcast on Canvas on the 27th of October 2002
A documentary by Rita Mosselmans
Ca. 40 minutes

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