Sef Peeters – Heavy as a Bird
15 feb 2020 - 23 aug 2020

Sef Peeters – Heavy as a Bird

Wanderings through a modest artist’s rich world of ideas


Works by Sef Peeters (1947-2019) may initially appear playful and accessible, but beyond that first impression lie essential questions. With a combination of humour and poetry, he points out the fact that life - and therefore art - is never unambiguous. Life and art often move between incompatible extremes. Peeters does not offer ready-made answers, but primarily tries to get spectators to think for themselves.

With its large installations, the Heavy as a Bird exhibition offers an impression of artistry that is as impressive as it is modest. The installations are supplemented with a selection of photographic works, films, documentation, graphic work, and objects.

At the express request of the artist, information in the exhibition rooms has been kept to a minimum. For this reason, all visitors will receive an exhibition guide including a floor plan and background information. This allows them to wander through the exhibition and connect personal experiences to Sef Peeters’ rich world of ideas, which is supplemented with sketches, designs and documentation.

The exhibition also includes a film about Sef Peeters by artist Marijke de Bie, Atelier La Machine.

Heavy as a bird was curated by guest curator Rebecca Nelemans. Berry van Gerwen took care of designing the exhibition and the exhibition guide.

With thanks to: Marianne Sprangers, the artist's wife, his grandchildren Lena Herzog and Jan Gorsz, as well as Jos Wilbrink, Rento Brattinga/Anna Bodon, Els Hoek, Cokkie Snoei, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen and the Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed (Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands).

Sef Peeters
Sef Peeters (Venlo 1947 - Breda 2019) lived and worked in Breda from 1973. He studied visual arts in Tilburg, Amsterdam, Krefeld (Germany) and Maastricht.

In 1976, the importance of his work was already recognized by the initiators of Amsterdam’s renowned De Appel gallery. Bureau Buitenland followed soon, and invited Peeters to take part in the traveling group exhibition Personal Worlds, including work by, among others, Bas Jan Ader, Pieter Laurens Mol and Moniek Toebosch . This was followed by numerous exhibitions at home and abroad. Heavy as a bird was the last major project in which Peeters was personally involved.

His work can be found in the collections of Centraal Museum (Utrecht), Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen (Rotterdam), Stedelijk Museum Breda, Noordbrabants Museum ('s-Hertogenbosch), Van Abbemuseum (Eindhoven) and Zentrum für Künstlerpublikationen Bremen (Germany).


Sef Peeters – Practice of Living
With new work by Peter Bouwmans, Jordy Koevoets, Margot Zweers

Location: StadsGalerij Breda - Oude Vest 34 (within walking distance of the museum) Duration: February 29 to May 17 Opening hours StadsGalerij: Fridays to Sundays from 11 am to 5 pm

Marking the occasion of the exhibition Sef Peeters - Heavy as a bird, the museum has invited three younger artistic colleagues to respond to Practice of Living. Through this installation, Peeters wanted discover where he stood in life: "I aim to convey that discovery, or define it, or state it as a problem."

During a working period in the StadsGallery, Peter Bouwmans, Jordy Koevoets and Margot Zweers will create new work that they will be presenting alongside parts of Sef Peeters’ original installation.

In collaboration with StadsGalerij Breda. Special thanks to the Municipality of Breda“Am I also an artist when I sleep at night?“ (Sef Peeters in 2019)“In making art, I consider my existence, which is a form of transcendence. But making art is also a means to be clearly present." (Sef Peeters in 1994)

Guest curator Rebecca Nelemans selected the works for this exhibition, in close consultation with the artist.

Image at the top: Sef Peeters, Phoenix, Ich bin ein Bildhauer, 1983 Image below: Sef Peeters, Concept voor sculptuur, 1981

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