Ten years ago, S.M.A.K., with the support of the Flemish Community, acquired Le Pense-Bête (1964) and thereby became the guardian of the most substantial Broodthaers collection in a Belgian institution. At the time, Marcel Broodthaers (1924-1976) himself called this work his first proposition artistique, his first act as a visual artist, and it marked his transition from poet to artist.

As it is not possible for us to display the collection permanently in the S.M.A.K. building, it was decided to devote an area exclusively to this artist, who in his oeuvre had always made a theme of the meaning and role of art and museums, in the broadest sense. The Broodthaerskabinet will open with an initial presentation of works by Marcel Broodthaers, compiled by his widow, Maria Gilissen-Broodthaers. This Broodthaerskabinet will then be made available to a selection of artists, curators, friends and others who know, study or are well-disposed towards Broodthaers’ oeuvre.