1934 - 2018
Born in Athens (GR), born in Leopoldsburg (BE), died in Balen (BE).
Jef Geys (1934 - 2018) graduated from the Antwerp Art Academy and settled in Balen, in the Kempen region, where he worked as an art teacher at a girls school for more than 30 years. In fact, this was one of Geys's many ways to criticise society and art - a critique that is a fundamental value in its extensive, diverse and complex work.
Geys has been described as an artist stuck between a regional and international context, cut off from social reality. That is not necessarily true. In many respects, he is a disciple of Marcel Duchamp, who defended the strategy of undisclosed withdrawal. Geys has chosen to build his work on provincial references. All his exhibitions are accompanied by an issue of the newspaper Kempens Informatieblad, which he publishes himself and designs like a local, free circulation newspaper.
One of his most important strategies is subversion, which, as he rightly emphasises, can only ‘happen within the system’. In 1970, Geys was invited to prepare a solo exhibition in the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp. He answered with a letter to the museum, - and to the Ministry of Culture, Defense and Justice - proposing to blow up the museum. Nevertheless, the exhibition took place the following year. This is characteristic of his method, which is focused on processes and seeks confrontation: Geys creates situations that are so full of contradictory potential that they threaten to inflate; by dismantling them, he shows the corrupting powers of the present reality even more compellingly.
Items View all
België - Villa M. te Zede...
Jef Geys, België - Villa M. te Zedelgem - Loppem - 1989 - Stéphane Beel, 1991. Object, wood, plexi, 14 x 72 x 27 cm.
Czechoslovakia - House in...
Jef Geys, Czechoslovakia - House in Prague - 1985 - Bocân, 1991. Object, wood, plexi, 24 x 35 x 27 cm.
Von der Wiederholung der ...
Jef Geys, Michel François, Ulli Lindmayr, Ria Pacquée, Patrick Vanden Eynde, Patrick Van Caeckenbergh, Bernd Lohaus, Frank F Castelyns, Jef Lambrecht, Von der Wiederholung der Träume zur Realität (cat.), 1991. Book, paper, ink (printing), A5 var..
Martin Douven - Leopoldsb...
Jef Geys, Martin Douven - Leopoldsburg - Jef Geys (Kempens Informatieblad 2011), 2011. Book, ink, paper, 44 x 30.5 cm, language : Dutch, English, French, German, publisher : Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Antwerpen.
Events View all
The collection III – Spri...
22 February 2003 - 18 May 2003.
In the first presentation, there was much room for the rather conceptually coloured core of the collection – the works from the Gordon Matta-
Martin Douven – Leopoldsb...
09 September 2011 - 31 December 2011.
Martin Douven (°1898 - †1973), a self-made painter from Leopoldsburg, started in 1928 with the sale of his own paintings. Later, he taught hi
Ensembles View all
The Artist's Novel
The Book Lovers is a research project on the phenomenon of the artist's novel curated by David Maroto and Joanna Zielińska. The central quest
RAGE This notion came to mind when pairing Vlassis Caniaris, Jef Geys and Cady Noland. Rage is often perceived as a blinding feeling,
Aanwinsten 2017 [Acquisit...
In 2017, the collection was enriched by the international avant-garde from our region in the 60s and 70s, with an emphasis on performativity
IE - Intercontinentaal En...
Project covering various aspects of the artistic interventions of Jef Lambrecht, sometimes along with Karel Schoetens (BIWA) and others - con