Two banners on the south façade of deSingel, alongside the Antwerp ring-road (R1)
Each 1000 x 1000 cm
Commissioned by deSingel
In 2004, the then curator at deSingel, Moritz Küng, initiated the Curating the Campus project. The intention was to give visual art a permanent place on the campus alongside architecture, dance, music and theatre. Each year, Küng invited an artist to conceive a new work, or else he retained a site-specific work after the end of an exhibition. The project gradually expanded into a collection of permanent works created by eleven artists from Belgium, France, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
It was with the work commissioned from Matt Mullican that the Curating the Campus project officially started. deSingel wanted to use its exceptional location alongside the Antwerp ring-road (R1) – one of the busiest traffic routes in Europe – to display on its façade what went on inside the building. Mullican designed two symbols in the form of monumental banners. They are part of a complex system of pictograms that the artist uses for his cosmological world-model. This model is ordered using five sectors and colours: green for nature and the four elements, blue for the ordinary and the subconscious, yellow for the arts, black & white for communication and red for subjective thought. The blue flag called ‘World unframed’ shows a globe of the world that represents deSingel’s internationalism. The red flag called ‘Audience sign’ shows three abstract human figures looking at a black area that can be interpreted as a painting, screen or stage.
Matt Mullican (1951, Santa Monica, CA, USA. Lives in Berlin). His work has been shown at the Museuo Tamayo in Mexico City (2013, solo exhibition), the Arsenale at the Venice Biennale (2013), the Haus der Kunst in Munich (2011, solo exhibition) and the Bonnefantenmuseum in Maastricht (2010, solo exhibition).