Happy Sad

Daan Gielis


Installation, 100 x 100 cm.
Materials: neon

Collection: Stad Antwerpen, in langdurige bruikleen in M HKA (Inv. no. SCA0067).

The work of Daan Gielis (b. 1988, Holsbeek — d. 2023) explores the emotional, communicative, and social systems that underpin the world we live in. He started from his own experience to record conflicting feelings that reinforce each other. His work reminds us that there are no easy solutions. For Happy Sad, Gielis references emoji signs, a recurring theme in his work. Emojis have become a fixture of our online conversations, symbolising the paradox in our social interaction: our attempt to share a highly personal story using a highly generic sign system. In Happy Sad, happiness and sadness coincide.

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