Visiting the Kunstenbibliotheek in Ghent

A few weeks ago I visited the Kunstenbibliotheek or “Art Library” in Ghent (Belgium) to consult their zine collection. It’s a relatively new and small collection but it includes beautiful and interesting publications. I had donated some of my zines before and during the pandemic and felt excited to finally take a look at all the zines they have…

Kunstenbibliotheek contains the collections of the KASK (School of Arts of HOGENT), SMAK (contemporary art museum), Design Museum, STAM (city museum), HISK, and Gentse Gidsen. I love that they often put emphasis on books about political issues like decolonisation and feminism in their displays on social media and in the library itself. Their zine collection as well contains a few zines which touch upon political topics. I assume that the majority of the zines are made by (former) art students, with a lot of comics and illustration-based zines. There are a lot of beautiful publications among them. I was also intrigued by zines about the occult (“Magic in the Anthropocene”), about criticism of art schools and galleries, and reprints of classic feminist texts. Finally, I was happy to see some zines in their collection that were made by zine pals like Antek (Fritkot), Girls Go BOOM, Tieten Met Haar, and Engagement. What’s extra cool is that the zines are treated as library books in that they can be checked out to be read at home.

At the moment the Kunstenbibliotheek is collaborating with KASK and other organisations to organise reading groups with graphic novels and comiczines about femininity.

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About rebelsister

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