Stories from the Ground

Below our feet, the Eurasian Plate is slowly shifting, while postcolonial and environmental challenges are forcing us to rethink notions of identity, class, and hierarchy.

The artists in Stories from the Ground address the ecological, material, social, symbolic, and spiritual dimensions of painting, telling stories about today’s globalized world.

Some artists trace new ideas of the sublime in their collaboration with dirt, earth, and soil; others redefine the concept of “ground” through painterly protocols. In contrast, others explore adjacent media ecologies of printing or photography.

In each of their maverick practices, painting takes a prominent place: As a productive refusal, as a tool to open up new uncommon perspectives, and as a language to tell stories. These shared narratives provide sparks from which future planetary commonalities can emerge so that the universal and personal can reconcile as the symbolic and the real.

Using a selection of modernist works from the collection and long-term installations in and around the museum as a starting point, new perspectives are also provided on local art historical narratives.


Ellen Altfest, Kasper Bosmans, Vija Celmins, Edith Dekyndt, Laurent Dupont, Bracha L. Ettinger, Isa Genzken, Gabriel Hartley, Derek Jarman, Behrang Karimi, Stanislava Kovalcikova, Jannis Marwitz, Delcy Morelos, Dala Nasser, Loïc Raguénès, Shervin/e Sheikh Rezaei in coll. with Maxime Prananto, Lin May Saeed, Selma Selman, Vivian Suter, Kazuna Taguchi, Daniel Turner, Michael Van den Abeele

From the collection of Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens

Anne Bonnet, Charles-René Callewaert, Hippolyte Daeye, Lili Dujourie, Esteban Fekete, Isa Genzken, Bernd Lohaus, Constant Permeke, Anna Staritsky, Niele Toroni, Edgar Tytgat

From the collection of the Andries-Vanlouwe Foundation

René Magritte, Gerhard Richter, Mitja Tušek


Martin Germann