Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens (MDD), the modern and contemporary art space founded by collectors Jules and Irma Dhondt-Dhaenens in 1967 in Deurle, Belgium, has appointed Antony Hudek as its next general director. He succeeds Joost Declercq, who retired in August 2019 after a decade at the helm of the institution. The museum opted not to renew Declercq’s contract following a dispute with the board over a proposed expansion of the museum. Hudek will take up the post on February 17.
Born in Geneva in 1976, Hudek previously served as director of the art space Objectif Exhibitions in Antwerp and as a curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Antwerp; the nonprofit contemporary art center Raven Row in London; and Tate Liverpool. He most recently held the position of director of Curatorial Studies, a graduate program that is shared between the KASK-School of Arts in Ghent (S.M.A.K.) and the University of Ghent.
“The nomination committee led by Benedikt van der Vorst chose Antony Hudek from around thirty candidates for his management qualities, heritage experience, knowledge of the contemporary art world and academic expertise,” said Jan Steyaert, chair of Dhondt-Dhaenens’s board of directors. “His motivation to further develop and strengthen the intrinsic qualities and the already implemented policy of the MDD was decisive.”
During his tenure, Hudek plans to strategize about how to attract new audiences and increase the museum’s regional, national, and international reach. “The museum Dhondt-Dhaenens has incredible potential,” Hudek said. “Since 1967, the museum has been guided by a tradition of audacity. My vision for the museum is to build on this heritage with, on the one hand, major historical exhibitions centered on its collection, and, on the other, contemporary art exhibitions aimed at wide audiences. In addition, I want to strengthen the museum’s research profile, promote the Wunderkammer Residence, and the Van Wassenhove House more widely, and regain trust with the neighborhood and municipality.”