03 Feb 2024 - 02 Jun 2024

Imagine Home

Het Noordbrabants Museum


In the exhibition Imagine Home, thirteen international artists express their experiences of displacement and their desire to find and (re)make a home. The exhibition explores questions closely related to the artists’ lived, individual stories and, more broadly, to the social and geopolitical context in which these stories are repeated. 

Raafat Ballan (Syria), Mirna Bamieh (Palestine), Manon de Boer (India), Eliza Bordeaux (The Netherlands), Heidi Bucher (Switzerland)Sandi Hilal (Palestine), Foundland Collective (Lauren Alexander, South Africa & Ghalia Elsrakbi, Syria), Zhanna Kadyrova (Ukraine), Ines Kooli (Tunisia), Lucas Lenglet (The Netherlands), Narges Mohammadi (Afghanistan), Stéphanie Saadé (Lebanon), Jerrold Saija (The Netherlands). 

Seeking the feeling of home 
A house is not just a place you live in; a house also lives in you. It is the smell of soap, the taste of your favourite dish, or the sound of a humming fan. A feeling of security, of happiness, or conversely of pain or melancholy. Because what does home mean when you are forcibly displaced? Perhaps home is an imaginary place rather than the place where you live or come from. If home is not contained in the physical place or the objects you surround yourself with, where can that sense of home be found? And how do you maintain a feeling of home when you have had to leave it behind?  

The exhibition Imagine Home presents a curated selection of existing and newly created works, ranging from photographs, videos, and sculptures to sound works and immersive installations. The focus is on artworks that centre on sensory experiences: scents and images that evoke a sense of home; sculptural works that embody lost memories; and powerfully emotive installations. 

Finding a sense of home in a museum 
Another important question raised by this exhibition is whether the museum can also be a place to find or discover a sense of home. Can art contribute to a sense of belonging? With Imagine Home, Het Noordbrabants Museum invites you to not only look and reflect, but also to share. An important part of the exhibition is The Living Room (Al Madhafah) by Palestinian architect Sandi Hilal: a meeting place where people who have been forced to leave their country can themselves receive guests. Visitors are invited to engage in conversation about what ‘home’ means to them.    

Imagine Home includes an extensive public programme of meetings and conversations with artists, performances, poetry readings, and workshops. Through these various moments of encounter between makers and audience, Het Noordbrabants Museum looks for ways to create feelings of commonality and connection in and through art – based on the strong belief that art and imagination play a crucial role in the pursuit of an inclusive society. 

Curated by Nina Folkersma, Interim Senior Curator, Het Noordbrabants Museum 

The exhibition is supported by the Province of Noord-Brabant and the Municipality of ‘s-Hertogenbosch. 

Press release from Het Noordbrabants Museum 

Image: Narges Mohammadi. Passing Traces. 2020. 700 kg of Persian halva (flour, sugar, butter and cardamom) and two wooden constructions. 2.15 x 4.78 x 0.80 m (each). Installation view of KBK Graduation Show at Royal Academy of the Arts the Hague (KABK), 2020. Photography by Io Sivertsen. Image courtesy of the artist and Copperfield, London