“The whole series of “Multiples & Editions” I have realized, usually corresponds to my installations of a certain period: posters, small compositions, some “Sorry’s”, tableaux vivants, projects. Often, these multiples were created as an annex of temporary installations, or with the motivation to help non-profit organizations or to cover the costs of installations in galleries. After 40 years of working on these, I was surprised by their number: about 80. I have always seen this as a “sideline” activity, but now that the Antwerp Academy is exhibiting these and they are being published in a book, I am pleasantly surprised and happy. After an extensive search at home and abroad (I only own about ten of these multiples & editions) we arrive at a remarkable result, which reflects all aspects of my oeuvre and indirectly brings them back into attention.” - Guillaume Bijl, 2021
The Belgian artist Guillaume Bijl (°1946) surprised the international art world of the early 1980s with his transformation installations. Galleries, art spaces and museum were radically transformed into ordinary looking commercial or entertainment venues like carpet stores, supermarkets or TV-Quiz decors. Apart from these, Bijl presents slices of dead pan reality as ‘situation-installations’ and ‘compositions trouvées’. Lesser known, but widely distributed are the multiples Bijl created in the context of an installation or an exhibition. These objects seem extremely banal or kitschy but acquire a different meaning when seen as part of Bijl’s artistic strategy of staging and appropriation. Together with the posters and books Bijl designed, all of Bijl’s multiples are collected for the first time in this catalogue raisonné. The book was accompanied by an exhibition in the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp.
Guillaume Bijl. Multiples & Editions
Edited by Johan Pas and David Vermeiren
Designed by Boris Van den Eynden and Guillaume Bijl
Produced by Stockmans Art Books, Bruno Devos
Published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther und Franz König, Köln
1000 copies, of which 25 accompanied by the multiple Composition Trouvée, 2021