Christian Dotremont would have been 100 years old this year. The King Baudouin Foundation is paying an artistic homage to this poet-artist at Wittockiana, where the photos of Georges A. Bertrand will be exhibited. The photographer invites us to a voyage of poetic discovery of the emblematic places in Dotremont’s life and sets them in dialogue with some of the artist’s work. The exhibition is at Wittockiana, Brussels, from 11 June to 2 October 2022.
Photographer-traveller and kindred spirit of Christian Dotremont (1922-1979), Georges A. Bertrand was the ideal choice of person to follow the footsteps of the inventor of the ‘logogram’ (word pictures). His photographs unveil the places held dear by the poet and painter. The poetry of the photographs creates a dialogue with Dotremont’s quotations and verses, as well as with a selection of objects and illustrated books from the archives of this emblematic artist.
It was in 2011, that Guy Dotremont, the artist’s brother, repatriated Christian Dotremont’s archives from France and entrusted them to the King Baudouin Foundation. Since then, the Foundation has been responsible for the conservation, management and promotion of this archival fund, material that is crucial for the development of knowledge about the artist and his work, as well as the literature and art of the post-World War II period and the CoBrA movement in particular.
The Belgian poet Christian Dotremont was a great traveller who also had an amazing career as part of the 20th century avant-garde. After leaving school at the age of 17, he met the Belgian surrealists, with whom he continued to socialise during the war, travelling between Brussels and Paris, prior to founding the CoBrA movement, which brought together experimental artists of northern Europe. If CoBrA was a railway adventure that took the poet to Copenhagen, Brussels and Amsterdam, it also took him on numerous trips to the far north, until he discovered Lapland during the winter of 1956-1957. He returned regularly to Lapland to create logograms and then his ‘logoneiges’ (snowgrams)’. In 1963, Dotremont discovered Ireland, which he named ‘Green Lapland’.
Through the exhibition ‘Travels | Landscapes – Christian Dotremont’, photographer Georges A. Bertrand and the exhibition organiser, Stéphane Massonet, invite us to a journey of poetic discovery through the photographic image and the book, in the company of the inventor of the logogram.
High-resolution photographic material relating to the exhibition is available via https://images.kbs-frb.be/gc4siRyH1p
- ‘Travels|Landscapes – Christian Dotremont’. A photographic exhibition by Georges A. Bertrand’
- Wittockiana, 23 Rue du Bemel, 1150 Woluwe-Saint-Pierre (Brussels)
- From 11 June to 2 October, 2022
- Free visitor’s guide available in French and Dutch
- A catalogue of the exhibition is on sale at Wittockiana or on this website