“At a time when Web pages containing text are viewed for an average 1.5 seconds, we must be honest with ourselves and give up reading,” says Idris Sevenans of Troebel Neyntje. The manual’s attempts to achieve this are indebted to “double artists” like Marcel Broodthaers and Marcel van Maele, who died exactly ten years ago. These poets-cum-visual artists were exploring the possibilities of rendering their poetry unreadable as early as the 1960s. In 1964, for example, Broodthaers used plaster to encase the last fifty copies of his poetry book 'Pense-Bête', while van Maele muzzled books by means of white paint, clothes irons, spikes, bars and trash cans. From 1972, van Maele started bottling poems in wine, beer, and milk bottles. Two years later, Broodthaers produced the bottle edition 'Le Manuscrit trouvé dans une bouteille'. Stopper it!
Inspired by these leaders of illegibility, BOEKS, Sevenans, the legacies of both Marcels, and a group of installation art and graphic design students take over the entire length of the convent corridor connecting the Kunstenbibliotheek with the STAM in order to overwhelmingly confront us with new, custom-invented giving-up-reading exercises.
Troebel Neyntje in collaboration with BOEKS, Idris Sevenans, Marcel van Maele, Marcel Broodthaers, Nienke Baeckelandt, Laurène Buchheit, Pooja Hukku, Hilde Onis, Mona Schrevens, Jivan van der Ende en Finn Waters. Graphic design by Veerle Vervliet, Finn Waters, Aron Wouters & Mona Schrevens.