M HKA gaat digitaal

Met M HKA Ensembles zetten we onze eerste échte stappen in het digitale landschap. Ons doel is met behulp van nieuwe media de kunstwerken nog beter te kaderen dan we tot nu toe hebben kunnen doen.

We geven momenteel prioriteit aan smartphones en tablets, m.a.w. de in-museum-ervaring. Maar we zijn evenzeer hard aan het werk aan een veelzijdige desktop-versie. Tot het zover is vind je hier deze tussenversie.

M HKA goes digital

Embracing the possibilities of new media, M HKA is making a particular effort to share its knowledge and give art the framework it deserves.

We are currently focusing on the experience in the museum with this application for smartphones and tablets. In the future this will also lead to a versatile desktop version, which is now still in its construction phase.

The Autobiography of Daniel J. Isengart, 2012

Book, 20.2 x 12.5 cm, 351 p, language: English, publisher: San Francisco, CA: Outpost19, ISBN 9781937402488.

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. B 2025/523).

Literary synopsis

Technically a novel, but written in the wry memoirish prose of Gertrude Stein’s famous The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas (1933), The Autobiography of Daniel J. Isengart traces the paths of two expat artists, Filip and Daniel, from their original countries of Belgium and Germany to New York City and fuses their destinies as lovers and partners in aesthetic crime and delirious invention in the city’s art world and nightclub scene. It is a portrait of a vanishing but never quite vanquished world: of conceptual artists, performance artists, patrons, art dealers, phonies, freaks, and drag queens. Part Bildungsroman (both come of age together as rather disabused but unbeatable believers in themselves and each other) and part Picaresque (taking us to after-parties, rich people’s happenings, and seedy Lower East Side burlesques), The Autobiography doubles as a permanent resting place for the author’s vagabond Homeless Museum of Art, a pastiche of the contemporary art museum that the couple housed inside their rental apartment in Brooklyn, New York. The result is a mixed-media distillation of love letter, homage, and farce.

Relation of the novel to the artist’s practice

The Autobiography of Daniel J. Isengart both repeats and completes Filip Noterdaeme’s Homeless Museum of Art (New York, 2003), a Gesamtkunstwerk that, like Marcel Broodthaers’s Museum of Modern Art (Brussels, 1968), transposes the language of museums into a lower key in order to make the muses dance anew. Appropriating one of the most famous autobiographies of the last century, The Autobiography uncovers a history of artistic thefts, from Marcel Broodthears to Gertrude Stein, that each in their own time contributed towards Noterdaeme’s propensity for permanent creation. Anyone familiar with Stein's writings will recognize that Noterdaeme’s book owes its title, structure and syntax to Stein's The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas. Stein’s original approach to the genre serves thus as a template for the creation of a thoroughly new reworking of the autobiographical genre, turning her modernist anti-biography into a postmodernist sequel.

Novel's website

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>Front of the book (picture from the website of 'The Homeless Museum of Art')

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2005 (Photo by Russel Gera)

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2005 (Photo by Russel Gera)

>At the Homeless Museum of Art in Brooklyn, New York, 2005 (Photo by Russel Gera)

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2005 (Photo by Russel Gera)

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2007 (Photo by Coolio Studio)

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2005 (Photo by Russel Gera)

>The Homeless Museum of Art, Brooklyn, New York, 2007 (Photo by Daniel J. Isengart)


> Filip Noterdaeme.

Exhibitions & Ensembles

> Exhibition: Book Lovers 4.0 (Pop-up Bookstore). De Appel Arts Centre, Amsterdam, 28 January 2014 - 02 February 2014.

> Exhibition: The Preparation of the Novel (Book Lovers 5.0). Fabra i Coats - Centre d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Barcelona, 18 July 2014 - 05 September 2014.

> Ensemble: The Artist's Novel.