Hans Theys is a twentieth-century philosopher and art historian. He has written and designed dozens of books on the works of contemporary artists and published hundreds of essays, interviews and reviews in books, catalogues and magazines. All his publications are based on actual collaborations and conversations with artists.

This platform was developed by Evi Bert (M HKA / Centrum Kunstarchieven Vlaanderen) in collaboration with the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp (Research group Archivolt), M HKA, Antwerp and Koen Van der Auwera. We also thank Idris Sevenans (HOR) and Marc Ruyters (Hart Magazine).


xpo - 2013 - The Gunshot - Over oogleden en schietgeweren [NL, concept text]
Text , 1 p.


Hans Theys

About Eyelids and Gunshots

A couple of years ago, as a part of my endless quest for the unwavering laws of Art, I met the artist Ermias Kifleyesus, who trusted me with a piece of advice: "A good painting is shiny, fresh and hot like a penis. It should attract people like a magnet."
Building on this classic image of the 'fascinus’ I felt like creating a ‘salon’. I asked some painters whether they wanted to participate. Kati Heck replied: "What is it with men and their belief in the special softness of a penis. Eyelids are equally soft.”
Ronald Ophuis wrote me the following: “When Constable saw his work hanging next to a foggy grayish view of the Thames painted by Turner, he added some highlights to his own painting. Turner stood in the hall and saw what was happening. He went home, took a tube of reddish paint, a palette and a brush and returned to the salon. Constable was ready with his work, but was still lingering about. Turner walked to his painting and placed a red rising sun on the horizon. Constable saw this and turned white. A friend of his asked what was going on. Constable, nodding at Turner, replied: ‘He just fired a gun’.”
Art is the realm of difference. Innumerable differences are realized in this realm that not only liberate the artists of ways of being and acting, but also the spectators, who discover that they have the right to be different. Everybody wants to be as much as possible similar to the others, but at the same time be unique. And in this realm you can be both at the same time. The works that we have gathered for this show, are different from one another. I love to embrace these differences and to nurture myself with this experience.  Soft bullets being shot here, which clash and jump, hither and thither.

Montagne de Miel, April 27th 2013