Pense Bete

Marcel Broodthaers is considered to be one of the most influential postwar Belgian artists. Although he started his career as a poet, he is also a sculptor, painter, curator and filmmaker.

In 1964 he created a work of art comprising the remaining copies of a collection of poems rendered illegible in a plaster pedestal. The work is entitled Pense-Bête, the same title as the collection of poems. What is so remarkable about Pense-Bête is that it is Broodthaers’ first artistic work. It was the start of a new iconography that formed a thread in the rest of his work and was also the beginning of an artistic production that became one of the most important in European conceptual art. Pense-Bête was purchased as part of Collectie Vlaanderen, the policy that enables the Flemish authorities to purchase several top-class Flemish works of art when they are offered for sale. Visitors to the museum will now be able to see the work more regularly and it will also be available for further academic study. Pense-Bête has been given to SMAK on long-term loan.

All exhibitions
Become a Friend of S.M.A.K.
made by