Art’s Birthday is an annual event normally organised every 17th of January by the Museum of
Contemporary Art in Antwerp (M HKA). This year, due to covid restrictions and with Filliou’s
approval, we opted to organize the celebration of art in festive, oldskool style in the spring of 2022.
On Friday 27 May, during Antwerp Art Weekend, we’ll paint the town red!
Art’s Birtday was initiated in 1963 by French artist, performer, sculptor and ‘action poet’ Robert
Filliou, who was associated with the international Fluxus movement. Filliou proposed that, after
1,000,000 years, mankind should celebrate the fact that art exists and is still alive. He believed that art
is first and foremost about relationships, a principle that he developed in his concept of ‘Poetic
Economy’ which led to artistic notions of ‘Permanent Creation’ and ‘The Eternal Network’. After his
Death in 1987, artists worlwide began to celebrate Art’s Birthday with performances, mail art, fax art and
TV events so as to keep the spirit of ‘The Eternal Network’ alive. Birthday parties were initiated in
different locations across the world and artists were invited to bring birthday presents for Art.
For more than fourteen years M HKA has maintained the annual Art’s Birthday tradition of ‘serious
fun’, following Fluxus’ creative spirit and Filliou’s dream of ‘The Eternal Network’.
A selection of artists have been invited to freely interpret the usual sequence of events that make up
Art’s Birthday celebrations at M HKA. True to our tradition Art’s Birthday 2022 will feature
contributions by invited artists in the form of a digital invitation ( Imge Özbilge), an artwork displayed
on the museum’s façade (Charline Tyberghein), a state of the arts (sung by Gerard Herman), a birthday
cake (Kasper Devos), performances and installations by a.o.Marijke De Roover, Olivia Hernaïz, Roel
Heremans & Enki De Vries, Gijs Milius, Oussama Tabti,…. And we end the party with a DJ set by NUOVCHKA (Marlies De Clerck & Jason Dousselaere).