Jan Rosseel on his studio practice and Back-up in Museum Dr. Guislain

00:03:37 De Brakke Grond
How is our collective memory formed? What role do media, our psyche and politics play in forming it? These questions are central to the research by ‘visual storyteller’ Jan Rosseel.


This research takes the form of a trilogy of exhibitions in three different locations under the title Back-up. The first of these took place in De Brakke Grond in Amsterdam and focused on ‘media’. The exhibition has now been reconfigured to focus on ‘psyche’. This can be seen in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent, then at the end of the year it will move on to Stroom Den Haag, where the focus will be on ‘politics’.

In this second video portrait, Jan Rosseel talks about how he works and the results of this in his exhibition in former psychiatric institution Museum Dr. Guislain. Logically, ‘psyche’ plays the leading role in this exhibition. To investigate this, Rosseel taps into his own memories, arriving at the very first one: the execution of Romanian Communist dictator Nicolai Ceausescu. The way he then represents such ideas in a piece of work is not unambiguous. He himself refers to his way of working as ‘schizophrenic’, because it has to allow sufficient space for spontaneity and ad hoc thought experiments. This portrait provides a glimpse into the psyche of Jan Rosseel – a Flemish artist who sometimes himself only sees the final exhibition in his mind’s eye at the last minute.

This video was made to accompany the second part of the trilogy, which can be seen from 11 March until 28 May 2017 in Museum Dr. Guislain in Ghent. The first part was on show between 10 December 2016 and 29 January 2017 in De Brakke Grond, and the third part will be on show in Stroom Den Haag from 2 December 2017 through 18 February 2018. This is the second in a series of three videos about Jan Rosseel: Back-up. You can click here for more information on the exhibition in Museum Dr. Guislain.

Video credits

Video by: Xena Maria Evers

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