Improvise and overcome: Jan De Cock’s open invitation in wood veneer at KIOSK (Ghent)

‘It’s easier to imagine the end of the world than it is to imagine the end of capitalism, Belgium, …’ That’s what you’ll see, written on that right hand wall, upon entering KIOSK ‘s exhibition space in Ghent (till June 12). And then Jan De Cock adds, among other things: bio, Jean-Luc Godard, imitation, Renault Picasso, bunga bunga parties, spam, US interventions, Billy bookcases and Louvre. A politically charged text, the information leaflet says. I’d say: if you shoot in all possible directions, you’re sure to hit someone.

KIOSK’s exhibition space is a hell of a room to fill and Belgian artist Jan De Cock cleverly opted for an ‘infini’ in wood veneer, at once highlighting that semicircular space ánd referring to nineteenth-century panorama’s. And he added a couple of other elements to it as well. Nevertheless, as a whole his installation didn’t make an lasting impression on me. It seemed a bit too easy, lacking coherence and impact.

His blank panels – looking like a wall craving for election posters – do succeed though as an open invitation towards the students of that Academy of Fine Arts, nearby. Come on! Come up with something good, that could be exhibited on these panels! Come up with something that tops all of this! Improvise and Overcome. It shouldn’t be that difficult, I’m almost tempted to say.

Jan De Cock ‘Improvise and Overcome’, Derek Sullivan ‘Young Americans’, KIOSK, Ghent, through June 12. Info here.

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