Navigating Polarities at Full House Collection

Group Exhibition

01.06–05.01.2025: Mu.ZEE, Ostend, BE

One last time, before the museum closes in early 2025 for a three-year thorough renovation, Mu.ZEE will fold back on its unique ‘flowing’ collection dedicated exclusively to Belgian art from 1880. For the first time since the Flemish Government acquired it, the work ‘Navigating Polarities’ will be on display at Mu.ZEE, where it became part of the museum collection.

“Navigating Polarities, an immersive film installation, investigates the history of navigation and the natural forces of polarity and magnetism in the physical world. The work takes the Earth’s geomagnetic field as a starting point, considering how micro- and macrocosmic elements are contingent on these properties to operate.

On 29 June 2024, The Longest Day will take place in cooperation with KAAP: a day full of performances that will unfold as one big ‘happening’ between the two cultural houses and the public space in between, from sunrise to sunset. The performance ‘Electrify Everything’ by Marjolijn Dijkman and Pom Bouvier-b will be a part of the program.

‘Electrify Everything’ translates the seductive and captivating magic of demonstrations of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment into a critical exploration of the origins of the units and language used to measure electricity. The field of electricity has been developed, manipulated, and named for three centuries to control and apply it. 

See for more information: MU.ZEE

FULL HOUSE COLLECTION invites the visitor to an exhibition on the various floors of the museum… Mu.ZEE is going for a “full house”, with work by more than 80 artists from the collection! The spaces at Mu.ZEE do not follow a route so Mu.ZEE allows the spectator to wander at will through an open scenography, enabling the discovery of many surprising links between artworks. Familiar chronology is abandoned in favour of bringing together artists and artworks from different contexts and times – from around 1880 to the present day.

In each space you pass through as a visitor, you will see an ensemble of artworks, brought together on the basis of a shared interest or theme, although the artistic execution may differ greatly. The artworks click or clash: they complement each other or point to opposing attitudes. Together they say more than they reveal individually. De Grote Marine by James Ensor sparkles with the colours that were impressionistically applied to canvas by the artist with a palette knife and brush, while 130 years later, with the same interest, Ann Veronica Janssens went in search of industrially manufactured glass plates that, like Ensor, seek to capture light and perception… to give just one example. Or another example: in 2024, the year in which surrealism celebrates its 100th anniversary (the manifesto was published in 1924), Mu.ZEE is displaying an imposing and perplexing surreal figure by Valérie Mannaerts next to a mysterious painting by Luc Tuymans, the meaning of which is not immediately apparent. A little further on hangs De Ijzertijd (The Iron Age), a painting by Paul Delvaux in which a naked woman can be seen with a train station in the background, etc. A video room is also being set up in which one video from the collection will be shown each month. They are programmed like a real cinema, from the beginning of June until the end of the year.

On display is work by Pierre Alechinsky, Sammy Baloji, Euphrosine Beernaert, Elise Berkvens, Jean Bilquin, Kasper Bosmans, Elen Braga, Marcel Broodthaers, Laurie Charles, Leo Copers, Franky D.C., Raoul De Keyser, Paul Delvaux, Roel D’Haese, Marjolijn Dijkman, Carmen Dionyse, Christian Dotremont, Charles Drybergh, Lili Dujourie, James Ensor, Pierre-Louis Flouquet, Alice Frey, Georges Grard, Jeanne Graverol, René Guiette, Ann Veronica Janssens, Paul Joostens, Ermias Kifleyesus, Félix Labisse, Lismonde, René Magritte, Valérie Mannaerts, Pol Mara, Marcel Mariën, Katja Mater, Marc Mendelson, Jacqueline Mesmaeker, Jean Mukendi Katambayi, Antoine Mortier, Nadia Naveau, Otobong Nkanga, Hans Op de Beeck, Constant Permeke, Mig Quinet, Jean Rets, Peter Rogiers, Tremaine de Senna, Victor Servranckx, Léon Spilliaert, Walter Swennen, Tapta, Ante Timmermans, Luc Tuymans, Michael Van den Abeele, Jan Van Imschoot, Anne Mie Van Kerckhove, Louis Van Lint, Théo Van Rysselberghe, Jef Verheyen, Rik Wouters, Marie Zolamian.