Jef Geys is a confirmed Belgian artist. In 2009, he represented his country at the Venice Biennale.
Since the 1950s, his work has been an ongoing exchange between the personal and the universal. He meticulously keeps an inventory, from which he draws, to create new narratives around three fundamental axes: his environment, his private life and his relationship with the outside world. Since birth, his life has been in Kempens: the name of the region that is also, by extension, Kempens. Informatieblad, the name of the newspaper in which Jeff Gens began working and which he has adopted as the artistic medium for his research. Jeff Gens likes to multiply his experiences: working with neighborhood committees, taking part in strikes, leading a political party and mixing the notions of minor and major art… experiences that aim to propose forms of transmission, or even apprenticeship.
Eddy Merckx’s Tour de France 1969 is an exhibition of 67 black-and-white photographs taken by Belgian artist Jeff Gens. In 1969, he decided to follow the Tour de France. A cycling enthusiast like many of his compatriots, the Belgian artist photographed the event of Eddy Merckx’s first victory. The images treat the riders equally with fans and onlookers. The advertisements are the symbolic literature of the event. The points of view are those of the true amateur, the one who, in a repetitive and rarely satisfied gesture, without any aesthetic project, embodies the purest critical position. Exhibited almost fifty years after their creation, the photographs could be marked by a documentary or nostalgic value, but that’s without taking into account the sharpness of Jef Geys’s work, which decides to emit a distance and accompany the frames with visible “bolted” fixings. This is followed by a montage of two pages from Belgian newspapers, dated July 22, 1969, in which the winner of the Great Loop of the Year and the first step on the moon are announced on an equal footing.
Exhibition folder :click here