* 1924 Sint-Gilles/Brüssel
† 1976 Köln
The Belgian artist Marcel Broodthaers became famous as an important representative of Conceptual art.
Marcel Broodthaers was born in Brussels in 1924. His first artistic steps were much influenced by words: Marcel Broodthaers was a lyricist. In the 1940s the young poet Marcel Broodthaers came in contact with Surrealism, to be more exact, he met René Magritte and the "Groupe Surréaliste révolutionaire", a Belgian group of Surrealists, in 1940. In 1957 Marcel Broodthaers released his first volume of poetry and his first film.
It was not before the mid 1960s that Marcel Broodthaers, meanwhile 40 years of age and with a strong interest in contemporary art, decided to express himself in visual arts. Marcel Broodthaers' art, which stood in the tradition of Magritte, was characterized by a deeply intellectual pervasion, irony and affinity for words from an early point on. An example of Marcel Broodthaers' concept of art is the fictitious "Musée d'Art Moderne, Departement des Aigles", which ironically eyes the institutionalization of art and art history.
The 1970s were traveling years for Marcel Broodthaers: In 1970 he moved to Düsseldorf, in 1972 to London, in 1974/75 he lived in Berlin on a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service, afterwards he moved to Cologne. By this time Marcel Broodthaers had become a fully established artist, numerous solo shows were dedicated to his art. Additionally, Marcel Broodthaers participated in the Kassel documenta in 1972 and posthumously in 1977 and in 1982.
Marcel Broodthaers died in Cologne in 1976.