The work of Patrick Van Caeckenbergh was installed amid the permanent collection as part of the rehanging of the galleries in 2017.
Patrick Van Caeckenbergh (Aalst, b. 1960) created his installation, titled 'The Pantologue (danke Schön)' with a selection of his own work, in the collection of Northern Netherlandish art from the Golden Age. He is mainly interested in how the world enlarged in the seventeenth century, how art became more differentiated and how the cabinet of curiosities succeeded in portraying the holistic principle of reality in its own unique way, in anticipation of the publication of the first encyclopaedia.
The man who loves everything
A Pantologue is a man enamoured by all that exists. Patrick Van Caekenbergh has spent his whole life categorising the world. He collects and classifies, establishes an inventory and relationships, between taxonomy and genealogy, cartography and cosmology. He has created a curious world for himself, which he explores and maps for us, much like an explorer who marvels at what he sees.
A dreamworld of chaotic order
Given that his imagination is greater than reality, his fatal urge to classify the world creates more chaos than order. That which seems logical from a rational viewpoint, becomes absurd and even surreal and hilarious if you examine it from the digestive perspective.
On the occasion of the new collection presentation, Patrick Van Caeckenbergh has donated one of his most important works to the museum. “The Cigar Box” is his studiolo or the workplace of the thinking artist. From October 2017, this work was included in the museum’s permanent collection, along with its contents, including his library, his bed and his desk.