For budding artists, the road to established artistry can be long and challenging. For several years, the Friends v/h S.M.A.K. have organised the 'Prize of the Friends v/h S.M.A.K.', an exhibition that gives them visibility every two years. Because without being visible, that road is even more difficult.Now we are going one step further: as a sign of faith in these artists, we want to add the artworks of the 11 laureates of the past two editions to our S.M.A.K. collection. With your support, we will help these leading artists emerge from the shadows!
Deposit your contribution on the account number:
- BE10 0000 0000 0404 | BIC: BPOTBEB1
- With the message: +++623/3732/80058+++
- From 40 euros, you will receive a tax certificate. Even though it is not a work of art, it is particularly interesting.
This initiative is a collaboration with the King Baudouin Foundation.
Get to know the 11 laureates and their work.
Jimena Chávez Delion
Jimena Chávez Delion (b.1989, Lima) studied at ENSAV La Cambre, Brussels and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp. Her recent sculptural and filmic work is inspired by the formal and material culture that arises in public places. This culture subsequently influences the identity of communities, the perception of values and the exchange of goods and contacts.
Mark Grootes (b.1991, Zaanstad) studied at KASK School of Arts, Ghent. In his multimedia work, he studies the relationship between humans and their environment. He often departs from specific places that exhibit a striking tension between nature and the cultivated landscape, between contemporary and historical architecture, or that notably deviate from expectations.
Angyvir Padilla (b.1987, Caracas) studied at the Académie royale des Beaux-Arts, ENSAV La Cambre and LUCA School of Arts in Brussels. She develops immersive installations and performances that integrate concepts such as belonging, migration and memory, which also relate to her homeland Venezuela. The artist explores the gaps between identity, materials and spaces and the emotions they evoke.
Anaïs Chabeur (b. 1992, Paris, France) is a pluridisciplinary artist based in Brussels. She graduated with a master's degree from La Cambre in 2016. Through films, objects and voices, her practice grasps liminal situations that touch on finitude and the coexistence of material and subtle worlds. In autumn 2021, she presented a solo exhibition at V2Ving (Brussels) and participated in the "Unacknowledged loss" residency at deSingel (Antwerp) under the direction of Barbara Raes. Recent exhibitions include Risquons-Tout, Wiels (Brussels), De la lenteur et de la mesure, Maison Grégoire (Brussels), A computer does not hesitate, Botanique (solo, Brussels), De Beeldenstorm, Brakke Grond (Amsterdam). She was a finalist for the Prijs van de Vrienden v/h S.M.A.K. (Ghent) and a HISK laureate (Ghent).
Elias Cafmeyer (°1990, Belgium, Roeselare) studied Graphic Design at K.A.S.K. Antwerp between 2013 and 2014, followed by Sculpture / Spatial Art at Sint-Lucas Antwerp and also obtained a Master's degree in Fine Arts.Cafmeyer starts from his fascination with urban development. He creates site-specific installations and sculptures in and about public space. Here, the urban landscape is a metaphor for the social fabric within an urban context.
Cafmeyer takes residues from urban space and elements that orchestrate mobility out of their original context and combines them in a surreal way. In this way, he puts the viewer on the wrong foot and questions the existing infrastructure and its use, often resulting in tragicomic scenes.
Guy Woueté, born in 1980 Cameroon, lives and works in Antwerp and Douala. He studied sculpture and painting in Douala and was a resident at the Rijksacademie in Amsterdam.He graduated from the University of Paris 8 and the École de Recherche Graphique (Erg) in Brussels, where he also teaches. Woueté's work always contains elements of social criticism, questions around borders, migration and symbols of domination in an age of globalisation. Woueté uses history as a source of material and mixes accounts of experience in collage, installation, performance, video and photographic work. He also works with sculpture and painting and creates artists' books. In every part of his practice, he seeks to break conventional attitudes that feed racism, discrimination, paternalism and alienation in all their forms.
His work has been exhibited in many museums and art events, including the University of Fine Arts (Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam), MKHA (Antwerp, Belgium), S.M.A. K. (Ghent, Belgium), Beursschouwburg (Brussels, Belgium), the Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels, Belgium), De Brakke Grond (Amsterdam, Netherlands), the Biennale of African Photography (Bamako, Malí), the Lubumbashi Biennale (Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo) Yaoundé National Museum (Yaoundé, Cameroon), Dak'Art Biennales (Dakar, Senegal), Havana Biennale (La Habana, Cuba), Enough Room for Space (Drogenbos, Belgium) and Spazzju Kreattiv (Valletta, Malta), among others.
Henry Andersen studied as a composer of experimental music in Perth and Berlin before moving to Brussels and retraining as a visual artist. He makes performances, sculptures, sound recordings and print work, sometimes alone and sometimes in collaboration with Bryana Fritz as part of the duo Slow Reading Club.Henry has presented work in contexts such as MAK Schindler House (US), Lafayette Anticipations (FR), Bergen Kunsthal (NO), S.M.A.K. (BE), Damien & The Love Guru (BE), Critical Distance (CA), ZKM (DE), kunstenfestivaldesarts (BE), and La Loge (BE). In 2019, he co-edited the publication The Floor is Uneven. Does it Slope? with Laura Herman, on the work of architectural duo Gins & Arakawa, via Mousse Publishing.
Jonathan Paepens (°1989 in Zottegem, Belgium) studied at KASK in Ghent, where he obtained the Master of Fine Arts degree in 2016. Afterwards, Jonathan Paepens completed a postgraduate at HISK. In 2018, he won the Audience Award of Prijs van de Vrienden v/h S.M.A.K.Am I the idiot? The question keeps haunting me, assailing me. It chases me, like Psyche, through field and valley. It seeks me out in unguarded moments and flies comfortably into my lap. I try to open a conversation with a gentle caress. Then it flees nervously into a dark corner. I call after it; the sound dies immediately. In the forest, the air is dens and the others idiots shout just as loudly. The question disappears into the finite and leaves me alone for a while. Suddenly, it looms before me again. Like a deafening fog, it rises from the ground. The clarity disappears, the water becomes stormy and murky. Am I the idiot? Just at these moments, I thought so much about gaining clarity now that I have to put down another text about my work. Am I the idiot?
Justyna Wierzchowiecka (b. 1991, Koszalin, Poland) is a Polish artist living in Brussels. She works mainly in photography and video. Justyna received her Bachelor's degree in visual design from ÉSAD Orléans, and she graduated from the Master's programme in photography at the Academy of Fine Arts La Cambre in Brussels. She is the author of the Museum Studies project in which she photographs museum interiors, artworks and exhibitions; audiences and staff of institutions; bookstores and gift shops of museums. The artist often reverts to archival images. A recurring theme in her work is the appropriation of images and subjecting them to sophisticated digital processing.
Lieselotte Vloeberghs was born in Lier on 17 November 1994 and completed her master's degree in Free Visual Arts at Luca School of Arts Ghent in 2018.Her main works are IE-a room of paper, a puzzle of drawn views-and Attempts to be more kind-a PDF course in kindness, community arts for shy artists.
Lieselotte is influenced by literature, spiritual techniques and meanings. Okkernuts and angelic figures determine sequences, materials or colours. Usually to end in an order without hierarchy.
Maud Gourdon (°1991, France) is a Brussels-based visual artist who works mainly around the construction of narratives that take the form of installations composed of drawings, texts and sculptures. Gourdon's installations always flow from intimate stories and objects that she wraps in wordplay, line play and multiple forms. Her stories travel through history and tradition in search of possible connections - through analogy, homophony, homography, coincidence, slip or pen - to gather material to create contemporary fictions. For her, this way of making connections is a model of storytelling.Maud Gourdon obtained her Master in Fine Arts from KASK (Ghent, Belgium), in 2017. She obtained her BA in Communication from La Hear (Strasbourg, France) in 2014. She recently exhibited her work at, among others, M-Museum (Leuven, BE), Cas-co (Leuven, BE), Pavillon Charles Vandenhove (Ghent, BE), Le Transpalette (Bourges, FR), S.M.A.K. (Ghent, BE), le 19, CRAC Montbelliard (France), Damien and the Love Guru, (Brussels, BE), Kiosk (Ghent, BE).
The selected works
The Mountain, The Tree, Yourself, 2018
HOME BOTH CONTAIN US AND IS HOUSED WITHIN US, 2020
Stanzas or the Law of the Good Neighbour, 2018
Jimena Chávez Delion
Museum Studies, 2018
Attempts to be more kind, Lesson 17; Throwing a party to celebrate pictorial aspects, 2020
The Planthunter, 2021
Objets Migrants, 2018