MULLER VAN SEVEREN X DESIGN MUSEUM GENT
OCT 9 - MAR 6 2022
Showcasing the collection one last time through the eyes of the Ghent designer duo Muller Van Severen, who celebrated their 10th anniversary in 2021. Fien Muller and Hannes Van Severen have been working together since 2011 on an inspiring oeuvre of sculptural pieces of furniture and other objects. This first major exhibition in their home city celebrates this anniversary on two levels. At the request of Design Museum Gent the two designers set to work with the museum’s exceptional collection. Their intuitive and eclectic selection of approximately 100 collectable items is ‘entering into a dialogue’ with their own work in a major installation on the ground floor of the museum. Their journey is highlighted through the eyes of 10 key figures who have influenced their development, against the backdrop of the museum’s historic rooms.
The ground floor exhibition space, designed specifically for this exhibition focused on harmony and proportion. The selection reads like an anthology of design history, with works by alvar aalto, ron arad, harry bertoia, marcel breuer, gaston eysselinck, huib hoste, marc newson, jean prouvé, studio alchimia, léon stynen, linde freya tangelder, willy van der meeren, henry van de velde, albert van huffel, maarten van severen and many others. The pieces were selected by muller van severen on the basis of a ‘kindred spirit’ approach. They recognised a similar vision and way of working in these objects, and a ‘design attitude’ that ties in with their practice.
In the historic salons of the hotel de coninck, the second part of the exhibition presented the design duo’s progress, referring to ten key figures who helped determine their path. This route wound through time and approached their work from ten different angles. It opened with a prologue in the salons on the ground floor with early autonomous work that Hannes Van Severen and Fien Muller created individually. The sculptures of Hannes and photographic work of Fien were produced before 2011, in a period in which their own visual language as artists was developing.
Each salon embodied an important moment and a link in their oeuvre and showed how chance encounters can lead to new creations and projects. The memories of these moments and collections are recounted by ten figures who have played an important role in the development of their oeuvre: jan hoet junior, delphine bekaert, veerle wenes, lowie vermeersch, clémence & didier krzentowski, james mair, andreas murkudis, massimo de carlo, kersten geers & david van severen, mette & rolf hay.