All posts tagged: public cultural institutions

Art for the People

One percent or 99 percent? By Vivienne Chow That’s the dilemma for a lot of public cultural institutions when it comes to putting on a show. Artistic excellence does not necessarily translate to public appeal. If an exhibition is skewed towards the one percent of educated art aficionados, it can easily become irrelevant. But if it aims at a wider public, the populist approach could mean foresaking certain artistic qualities. Walking that fine line is no easy task, but some institutions achieve it. They are characterised by a welcoming atmosphere and put on shows that are playful and easy to understand but also stimulating; children and adults can enjoy the shows without the need of patronising guided tours. The exhibition Wonderland, which runs until April 15 at the Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art (MIMA) in Brussels, is a nice example. MIMA is a young institution located in the Molenbeek neighbourhood. Housed in a century-old brick house that was formerly a brewery for Belle-Vue Kriek beer, it is located right by the Brussels-Charleroi Canal that separates the centre …