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Marcel Broodthaers

Industrial Poems, Open Letters

30 01 01 05 2021

WIELS is planning an unprecedented survey exhibition and a reference publication exclusively dedicated to Marcel Broodthaers' vacuum-formed plastic plates or ‘industrial poems’ (1968-1972).

Academie 1 1968 Plaque en Plastique embouti 87x1205cm Tirage 7 exemplaires copie

Marcel Broodthaers, Académie I, 1968

This research project initiated by WIELS reveals how central this still little-known project is to Broodthaers’ visual and poetic production. Marcel Broodthaers (1924-1976) was a Belgian poet and artist considered one of the founding fathers of European conceptual art. His work questions notions related to the museum, the value of art, reproduction and the function of language. His ‘industrial poems’, more than a hundred of which will be exhibited at WIELS, are real rebuses in which the non-coincidence of plastic signs and linguistic meaning is highlighted, following the play of text as image and image as text.