Private Passion X Public Duty: Hoet and Matthys-Colle in dialogue

25.May.24
5.Jan.25
Joel Fisher Roger Matthys Joel Fischer 1977 Mirjam Devriendt

To mark the tenth anniversary of his death, Jan Hoet (1936-2014), founder of the museum, is commemorated in a special exhibition: 'Private Passion X Public Duty: Hoet and Matthys-Colle in dialogue'.

To mark the tenth anniversary of his death, Jan Hoet (1936-2014), founder of the museum, is to be commemorated in a special exhibition. Regards croisés: Jan Hoet and Matthys-Colle in dialogue aims to explore the similarities and differences between the museum’s acquisition policy and that of the collectors Roger and Hilda Matthys-Colle. Given that Dr Roger Matthys was one of the founders of the Vereniging voor het Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst (V.M.H.K.) [Friends of S.M.A.K., Association for the Museum of Contemporary Art] and later also its chair (1974-1979), striking similarities can be seen between his own collection and the museum’s acquisitions. Furthermore, part of the Matthys-Colle Collection has been on long-term loan to S.M.A.K. since 2020, allowing gaps in the museum collection to be filled.

Conversely, the museum holds numerous works that serve as fine complements to those of the Matthys-Colle Foundation. Works from the two collections occasionally function as a kind of double act. Sometimes one of these works from the museum collection is still on display, whilst a complementary work from the Matthys-Colle Collection has been deaccessioned in the meantime. Selecting yet-to-be-exhibited work from the Matthys-Colle Collection for the first time has resulted in a series of artists who play an important role in the museum’s history being brought together. Sometimes, ensembles of several of their works are on display.

For over four decades, Mr and Mrs Matthys-Colle acquired works from artists representing sequential movements. As a result, this exhibition can be seen as an idiosyncratic and condensed overview of the art history of the second half of the twentieth century. But above all, it demonstrates the way in which a public and a private collection can complement and reinforce one another in an invisible dialogue.

To mark the tenth anniversary of Jan Hoet’s death, Thank God for the Gift – a documentary about Hoet made by Luc Vrydaghs – will premiere at Ostend Film Festival in January 2024.

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