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Victoria Adam

“If you do not have a password, you will need a password (1-7)”, 2021

“Untitled (rozen)”, 2021

Two works are part of ‘TRACES of the future’. ‘If you do not have a password, you will need a password (1-7)’ consists of a series of plaster shells, their exteriors tinted with products sourced from Adam’s everyday environment. These fragile works recall the (art)historical symbolism of sea-shells (for example as signs of supposed femininity, fertility or beauty). With the expected pearl replaced by a mirror, they also nod to modern compact mirrors and surveillance set-ups. Moreover, they reflect both the self-image of the visitor and their own perspective on the space. Their relation to each other, their constellation, was hence precisely designated, spread over the different floors of the gallery. In addition, ‘Untitled (rozen)’, a strikingly inconspicuous mural, can also be sensed on the ground floor. Through the sense of smell, the work responds to a synthetic nature made by humans. Over the course of the exhibition, the work will become more and more subtle, a softly lingering trace of what once was.

BC Architecten

“QWS, AL-R, AL-IDE, BRU, BRU-N", 2020

Their extensive knowledge of and experience with materials such as wood, natural stone, and also earth, BC got from extensive experimental research. When developing materials in laboratories, they have their prototypes tested for pressure. The broken, failed tests provide new information every time that can be worked with further - the harder they fail, the more they tell even. These relics are therefore important milestones in the creation process, and also have an aesthetic quality in themselves. The different colour shades are the result of different mixing methods and sun exposure during the drying process. In the exhibition, a few series of these "Milestones" are shown, as traces of a journey traveled, in all their fallibility and beauty.

Clarisse Bruynbroeck

“Veerle’s tools are on the table”, 2021


For "TRACES of the future", Bruynbroeck combines her artistic practice with her professional employment at valerie_traan gallery. As an assistant for many years, she drew on her mental archive of exhibited works to arrive at a very personal selection. Of these impactful works, she made abstracted miniature versions from her memory. The small-scale sculptures in polished brass act as a tribute, and hence also refer to classic votive images. The installation of Bruynbroeck's work, behind the dreamy curtain, emphasizes the ethereal atmosphere of remembering and the diffuse traces left behind by some images. 

Ignace Cami

“Hotspot”, 2021


Ignace Cami, through his focus on the possibilities and flaws of language, increasingly shifts the core of his practice towards the ephemeral and immaterial. In this way, he astutely creates tension between the fleeting experience of the work at a specific moment in a specific place on the one hand and the long-term carrying - or even spreading - of it on the other.


It is precisely at this intersection that his "Hotspot" can be understood. The new, in-situ work is based on the idea that this specific, prominent place in the exhibition space houses the stories of all the works of art that have been shown here over the past ten years. It is their story - however personally interpreted, inadequately remembered, passed on in fragmentary fashion - that survives their presentation. With "Hotspot" Cami feeds into those multi-layered narratives. He made brief descriptions of thirteen works that were previously shown here. These new linguistic representations stimulate the imagination, thus demonstrating at the same time the power, but also the impotence of language in all its ambiguity. That inadequacy is also reflected in their shape. Cami crumpled the descriptions, which he had gallery owner Veerle Wenes write in her elegant handwriting in fountain pen. As a reference to failed attempts, they nevertheless remain, after being read by visitors, on the hotspot of the gallery, elevated to final, fragile works of art.

Ralph Collier


“Day and Date Release #4: L’anglais sans peine”, 2021

For this exhibition, Collier created a new work in his "Day and Date Release" series. Starting from a context-specific date, he breaks open the so-called factuality of historical events in order to add a layer of fiction to them. In the context of the tenth anniversary of valerie_traan gallery, he looked back on its founding date, November 26, and thus arrived at the birthday of playwright Eugène Ionesco. For his work, Collier had two wedding rings made, seemingly complementing the illogical twist in Ionesco's first play "The Bald Soprano." In this absurdist play, Mr. and Mrs. Martin assume halfway through that, given their shared living conditions, they are also married. Collier then had two randomly chosen sentences from the Assimil Business English-Dutch engraved in the rings, as a reference to Ionesco who found inspiration in the nonsensical dialogues of the Assimil with which he tried to teach himself English. The phrases are shown side by side, as if they were in dialogue, but they do not make sense and thus serve mainly, in analogy with Ionesco, to show how people can talk at and not with each other. The rings, their engraved sentences with no clear beginning and end, and their circular movement refer to the infinite "loop" in which "The Bald Singer" is written. The expected symbolic value of the objects therefore seems to be at odds with their underlying meaning.

Babs Decruyenaere

“Mobile #065”, 2020
“The Unbearable Lightness of a Poem”, 2020 

In "TRACES of the future" Decruyenaere shows a hanging mobile. This sculptural translation of her formal language captures how the small and the large are intrinsically linked. Subject to changing environmental factors, the mobile repeatedly creates a random constellation, a cosmos entrusted to chance. In addition, the series "The Unbearable Lightness of a Poem" can also be seen. For this work, she increasingly blurs the lines of a poem, and with it the traces of her encounter with the poet. On the one hand, the sentences seem to float in the blank of the paper, but on the other hand they are roughly scratched in and away. The painful airiness questions the (self) protection that abstraction can offer.

DRDH Architects

Due to the current measures against the spread of the corona virus in Belgium and the United Kingdom, DRDH Architects were unable to execute their planned site-specific interventions in the gallery.


DRDH Architects was founded in 2001 in London by Daniel Rosbottom (b. 1969, UK) and David Howarth (b. 1967UK). As an internationally oriented studio, they work on projects in the United Kingdom as well as overseas, with multiple ones in Belgium. Their renowned practice was awarded with, amongst others, a Riba Award for International Excellence (2016) and nominations for the Mies van der Rohe Prize (2016-17), Architizer A+ Awards (2016), and BSI Swiss Architecture Award (2016). Their work was on show at the Chicago Architecture Biennial (2017), Royal Academy Summer Exhibition (2010), Shenzhen & Hong Kong Bi-city Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (2009), Art Basel (2009) and was included in the most important architecture magazines. 

Benedikt Terwiel


"Verlauf: Karl-Marx-Strasse 60 –

Oranienstrasse 38”, 2021

“a plot turn”, 2020

Via an old Berlin turnery, Terwiel acquired wooden prototypes of various stair balusters that were used in typical 19th-century Berlin 'Gründerzeit' buildings. Trying to classify their huge variation of forms, he was told by the turnerer that the most ornate pieces were used for the 'Vorderhaus' (the street facing building), the simpler variants for the 'Hinterhaus' (the back house) and the ordinary ones for the 'Seitenflügel' (the side wing). Their visual forms thus coincide with a specific social order. In his installation, Terwiel depicts these gradations, but also links them to a physical course. Each prototype belongs to a Berlin address, which creates a literal route. The negative imprint of the balusters contributes to the idea that they, like ghosts, like traces, bear witness to a previous presence.

Unfold x Liam Reeves 

“Grid Study #2”, 2021


Unfold has previously collaborated with Reeves: two of his small amorphous glass shapes were used for the desk lamps in Unfold's famous "Skafaldo" series. Unfold now integrated a third, larger form for "Grid Study # 2" into a geometric structure consisting of nylon connectors and paper rods. The “glass bubble” was first scanned in 3D; the software then translated this digital form into a grid that best encloses the glass. In a relatively rudimentary manner, the glass is thus nested in the rigid construction. As the title suggests, this work is a step in the development of objects that combine tools and concepts from several recent projects, in which objects were supported by similar “scaffolding”.

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