The Ideal Form is a series of works that investigate the legacy of socialist and flamingant Lode Craeybeckx (1897-1976). Craeybeckx was was the mayor of Antwerp from 1947 till his death in 1976, and therefor one of the most important architects of post-war Antwerp. During his time the city developed rapidly; the harbour was massively expanded and modern achitecture changed the skyline of the city. Craeybeckx had a vast array of interest but language and culture were important points of interest. In 1950 he developed the plan to change the Middelheim Park, that had been destroyed during the second world war, into an exhibition site for sculpture. The first exhibition proved a succes and therefor the city council decided to establish a museum on the premises. This museum had the task to organize biannuals for sculpture in the uneven years, as to become a counter biannual of Venice.
Craeybeckx was the driving force behind this initiative and initiated acquisitions and studiovisists abroad. He regularly undertook trips abroad and recommended artists and works for the museum. Even though he can be praised for his enthousiastic engagement, he also established a politically coloured and complicated collection and a cultural policy behind that is, up until today, highly influenced by local politics.
De ideale vorm translates the exhibition The Ideal Form as a book. It takes the works that were on show in an altered form and provides background information through an interview with the daughter of Lode Craeybeckx, Hilda and a text by Sofie Van Loo. The Dutch version was edited by Paul Hendrikse, Graphic design by Katja Gretzinger, published and generously supported by the Province of Antwerp, Belgium for the Prijs beeldende kunst Provincie Antwerpen.
The English version was published by Objectif and Occassional Papers