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How did an ancient carpet factory become a renowned art gallery, reinventing itself after 40 years as a vivid art platform? Read the full story, from the early days of Deweer Art Gallery to the brand new Platform 6a.

Deweer Art Gallery 1979 - 2019

From father to sons

Mark Deweer's passion for collecting art in the seventies, soon developed into a strong urge to share art. This led to the creation of Deweer Gallery in 1979 on the grounds of the family’s carpet factory. Since its beginnings, Deweer Gallery held firm to its philosophy that life is more than just doing business. Mark was the driving force and the initiator. His nose for artistic talent and his business acumen, along with the unconditional support of his wife Marleen Deweer, made for an ideal combination that would make the realization of his dream possible.

Raised surrounded by art, their two sons, Gerald and Bart Deweer, knew the world of art from within. Gradually, they took over the management of the gallery. Gerald and Bart wanted the gallery to continue to play a dynamic, ambitious and leading role on the national and international contemporary art scene. They continued to promote artists on the basis of strong internal/external exhibitions and participations in international art fairs such as Art Cologne (since 1995), ARCO Madrid (since 2001) and miart (Fiera Milano).

Deweer Gallery, representing more than twenty artists, focused exclusively on work that evinces a combination of critical and poetic qualities. Well-known for its representation of artists such as Stephan Balkenhol, Jan Fabre, Günther Förg, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov and Panamarenko, the gallery had a reputation for building artists. Deweer Gallery worked together with these artists for more than two/three decades. The early detection of talent became its trademark. The gallery was an important pioneer in discovering new artistic talents such as Georg Baselitz, David Hockney, Allen Jones, Anselm Kiefer, A.R. Penck and Thomas Ruff, in introducing – as the first Belgian gallery – the German Neue Wilde and the Italian Transavanguardia. The nose for new talent was also evident in their supporting of artists such as Melissa Gordon, George Little, Enrique Marty, Benjamin Moravec, Nasan Tur, Anna Vogel and Andy Wauman.


An impressive collection of 1700 works of art

During the past four decades, Deweer Gallery built an impressive international collection of 1700 purchasable works of art of different prominent artists.

To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the collection of Deweer Gallery was put in the spotlight during a major retrospective exhibition ‘40YDeweer – Bye, Bye and Hello’, held from 25 September until 15 December, 2019. This was the gallery’s way to say thanks to everyone who contributed to this unforgettable story – from collectors to art professionals, and subsequently say ‘goodbye’. The gallery closed its door by the end of December, 2019 and was turned into the Deweer Gallery Estate.

From then on, KETELEER GALLERY took on the main representation of all of Deweer’s active artists as well as the new estate. Out of a sincere admiration and respect for Deweer’s family, history and name in both Belgium and abroad, all this operated as a close partnership with Bart and Gerald Deweer, who stayed active as key liaisons and advisors, honoring the close ties that were built with artists and collectors over the years.

From October 2020 on, Bart and Gerald Deweer will start writing a new chapter, combining the legacy of the past 40 years with a renewed completion of their vision: sharing their art dreams with collectors, artists and the broad public in the new Platform 6a.

  • R.E. Waydelich & Omaggio aan Michelangelo, 1979. The opening of the very first exhibition of Deweer Art Gallery in the attic of the private home of Mark and Marleen Deweer on March 31, 1979.
  • At the opening of Ouverture, the first exhibition in the gallery's location Tiegemstraat 6A, in the presence of Jan Hoet, on October 12, 1985.
  • Jan Hoet (l.) & Mark Deweer (r.) visiting the exhibition Xth Anniversary Show, 1989.
  • (f.l.t.r.) Jo Coucke, Mark Deweer, Tony Cragg and his son, 1995.
  • one-man show Tony Cragg, 1995 - exhibition view
  • Jan Fabre, Umbraculum, 2002 - exhibition view
  • Matthieu Laurette, Commodities, 2004 - exhibition view
  • one-man show Stephan Balkenhol, 2005 - exhibition view
  • Sergey Bratkov, Dream Rooms, 2006 - exhibition view
  • Stefaan Dheedene, backdrop, 2007 - exhibition view
  • Enrique Marty, Aim at the brood!, 2006 - exhibition view
  • Matthieu Laurette, Plight 2, 2008 - exhibition view
  • Michaël Aerts, The Immaculate Collection, 2008 - exhibition view
  • Jan Fabre, Is the brain the most sexy part of the body?, 2008 - exhibition view
  • Cristina Lucas, Imago Mundi, 2008 - exhibition view
  • Art of the Loom - 32 Tapestries Woven On The Looms Of Mark Deweer's Factory, Otegem, Belgium, 1985 - 2010, 2011 - view on Ilya & Emilia Kabakov's The Flying Carpet, 2005-2006
  • Tatjana Gerhard, Als ob sie alles wussten, 2010 - exhibition view
  • Andy Wauman, The Golden Bullet That Takes A Million Years To Hit, 2012 - exhibition view
  • Speech by Mr Chris Dercon, director of Tate Modern in London, during the preview of 'Re-Opening', September 15, 2012
  • Re-Opening, 2012 - view at works by Kasia Fudakowski and Stefaan Dheedene
  • Re-Opening, 2012 - view at works by Jan Fabre
  • Keren Cytter, Tutorial, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Günther Förg, The Double Dream of Spring, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Kasia Fudakowksi, Where is your alibi, Mr. Motorway?, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Panamarenko Revisited, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Enrique Marty, Soft Cockney, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Jan De Cock, Everything For You , Otegem, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Matthew Lutz-Kinoy, Meadows on the grid float, and a playlist, a collaboration with Dena Yago, 2013 - exhibition view
  • Melissa Gordon, Modern Surfaces, 2014 - exhibition view
  • Shirana Shahbazi, 2014 - exhibition view
  • George Little, Wagon/Damask, 2014 - exhibition view
  • Michaël Aerts, It was like so, but wasn't, 2014 - exhibition view