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Kanal presents its new artistic director Kasia Redzisz
Brussels’ future museum of modern and contemporary art, Kanal–Centre Pompidou, welcomed its first artistic director Kasia Redzisz on Wednesday.
The Polish director and history of art graduate is in her 30s and boasts a wealth of experience in the international art world. She joined the museum at the end of 2021 following an appointment mired in controversy.
An independent jury selected Redzisz for the position earlier in the year, but the board of directors announced that she would become a co-director alongside Kanal-Centre Pompidou Paris director Bernard Blistène.
The decision was reversed following a critical open letter by cultural figures in Brussels, resulting in Redzisz being confirmed as the sole new director.
Before joining Kanal, she was senior curator at the Tate Liverpool. Prior to this role, she worked at the Tate Modern in London, where she curated several high-profile exhibitions. Between 2008 and 2015, she was director of the Open Art Projects in her native Poland.
Kanal, which occupies the former Citroën Yser garage alongside the canal, is scheduled to open as a cultural hub in 2024. Said Redzisz of her appointment: “I am delighted to be joining Kanal-Centre Pompidou at this pivotal moment of shaping the new institution.
“Brussels is home to citizens of multiple nations, growing number of artists from diverse backgrounds, numerous cultural organisations. They will be fundamental for the future of Kanal, a museum which should be equipped to respond to the ever-changing world, relevant for global debates but committed to its locality.”
Of her vision for Kanal, she said it was “as a dynamic, responsive, interdisciplinary museum - a space for paradigm-smashing experimentation, which brings us together to celebrate art and to keep rethinking its crucial role in our lives”.
Yves Goldstein, CEO of the Kanal Foundation, said: “Kasia Redzisz brings cutting-edge artistic vision reflecting her commitment to interdisciplinary programming and to establishing dialogues between artistic practices stemming from diverse geographies.”
The Centre Pompidou Paris has been instrumental in the launch, lending of works and financing of Brussels’ new flagship art museum. President of the Parisian art landmark, Laurent Le Bon, said: “I am excited to see Kasia Redzisz taking the helm of Kanal. She brings the reputation of not only innovative but also rigorous curator. Her institutional background and sophisticated understanding of museum collections make her an excellent partner for the dialogue with Centre Pompidou.”
Photos: Kasia Redzisz (c) Veerle Vandercauteren; Kanal Centre-Pompidou architect plans (c) NOA/EM2N/SBA