Since 1975 Jan Hoet has been head of the Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst in Ghent, and in 1999 he became Director of the newly-opened Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst (S.M.A.K.). Ever since Chambres d’Amis – an exhibition of contemporary art in private houses in Ghent – he has been regarded as one of the most original curators of our time. As director of documenta IX (1992), Hoet presented work at seven fixed spaces and numerous exhibition sites around central Kassel. In many of his other exhibition projects, the Belgian curator has also been intensely concerned with making contemporary art accessible to a wide public. Today, although contemporary art is more popular than ever, it still appears that many exhibitions are seemingly interchangeable. How can this development towards uniformity be explained? And what might contribute to an exhibition getting under the skin of a visitor, or, on the contrary, leaving them completely cold? Jan Hoet will be talking with Ann Demeester about curatorial challenges past and present.
Ann Demeester (*1975) is director at De Appel arts centre. She lives and works in Amsterdam. Demeester is co-editor of the magazines A-Prior and F. R. David.
Jan Hoet (*1936) is an art historian and curator. He lives in Ghent.