KASPER BOSMANS AT WIELS
Kasper Bosmans is a storyteller. Fascinated by tales that resonate across time, he unpicks their threads and playfully weaves them into new stories. Starting from specific examples – whether an obscure anecdote, artisanal recipe, or news item – Bosmans employs local, vernacular traditions to speak about today’s global questions. In our era of increasing polarization, he mixes references from different periods and cultures as a way to tease out their similarities, highlighting just how much we have in common.
His works take the form of bold murals, installations, sculptures and his signature Legends. These small painted wooden panels fuse formal traditions such as heraldic shields or illuminated manuscripts with an iconography culled from children’s books or flat, digital imagery. Avoiding the didactic explanation of his other pieces, the Legends instead offer enigmatic clues to Bosmans’ thought process, while existing as artworks in their own right.
Bosmans is intrigued by the possibilities offered by diverse techniques and materials. He presents here several new productions made together with specialist artisans. And running like a pink thread through the exhibition are references to queer culture, as evoked in the pink bobbin that appears in the Legend he painted for the project.
At the intersection of nature and culture, Husbandry is a term used to designate care and cultivation, the rearing of animals or growing of crops. Animals feature prominently in the works included here, always in relation to their cataloguing or controlling by mankind. Husbandry is also the good stewardship of a household and Bosmans’ references are often domestic.
Bosmans is particularly interested in history “as seen from the kitchen” and this guide is structured according to the ingredients – whether animal, vegetable or mineral – that Bosmans employs to cook up this delicious visual feast.
This exhibition is preceded by Bosmans’ first monograph, titled Dovetail, co-published by WIELS with Walther König (2020). Designed by Nerijus Rimkus, it features images of Bosmans’ exhibitions from 2014 to 2020 and several texts: an essay by WIELS senior curator Zoë Gray, an interview with the artist by Martin Germann, and texts by Philip Van Den Bossche, Piero Bisello and Julia Mullié, the book’s editor.
Curator: Zoë Gray
Kasper Bosmans was born in 1990 in Lommel (BE). He lives and works between Brussels and Amsterdam. He studied at HISK in Ghent and at the Royal Academy for Fine Arts in Antwerp. Kasper Bosmans was included in the group exhibition Un-Scene III at WIELS in 2015 and was a WIELS artist in residence in 2016. Bosmans is represented by Gladstone Gallery.
Pictures by © Gunnar Meier + Hugard & Vanoverschelde