Motel Corona


In Motel Corona, S.M.A.K. presents a group of new acquisitions that entered the collection through an unusual route.

Meanwhile, the year 2020 is etched on our memories via the collective lockdown. Museums and cultural venues were closed, projects were suspended and the financial impact was huge. But also for artists, who lost their connection with the public and were thrown back on themselves, without any perspective.

To compensate for this loss, the Flemish Community released 3.75 million euros in 2021 for the purchase of artworks by contemporary artists. This not only provided welcome support for many practitioners but also gave a huge boost to the region’s contemporary art collection.

With input from contemporary art museums in Flanders, a 12-member committee purchased 256 artworks. These were distributed between the various Flemish museums, of which 42 artworks went to S.M.A.K. We present a selection of these works in the exhibition Motel Corona, which takes its name from a 1994 artwork by Liliane Vertessen.

With works by, amongst others, Elke Andreas Boon, Dries Boutsen, Ricardo Brey, Manu Engelen, Pélagie Gbaguidi, Maud Gourdon, Hamza Halloubi, Joke Hansen, Emilio Lopez-Menchero, Kurt Ryslavy, Elly Strik, Patrick Vanden Eynde, Koen van den Broek, Guy Van Bossche and Liliane Vertessen.