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Barcode, European Union flag redesign by Rem Koolhaas, 2004. Courtesy OMA and Bureau Europa.

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Barcode, European Union flag redesign by Rem Koolhaas, 2004. Courtesy OMA and Bureau Europa. Ausstellungsansicht, 2021, IKOB Museum für Zeitgenössische Kunst.

06.11.–12.12.2021

Rem Koolhaas

Barcode
as part of the euregional exhibition 'What The Flag?!'

'What the flag?!' is a project by Greylight Projects (NL) in which artists design flags that are hoisted on flagpoles outside or inside the venues of the partners of Very Contemporary, the network of 12 contemporary art institutions in the Meuse-Rhine Euregion. The VC network partners invite artists (of their current exhibitions or as part of their collection) to design a print for the flag. Each institution then sends their flag to be shown at a partner venue in an act of exchange and re-circulation.

For the duration of 'What the flag?!', IKOB presents Rem Koolhaas' European Union flag redesign Barcode (2004), part of the collection of Bureau Europa (NL). It was one of several visual ideas presented by Rem Koolhaas' architectural agency OMA to brainstorming sessions about Brussels' role as the 'Capital of Europe', organised by the European Commission and Belgian government. It is a symbol combining the flags of the member states in the form of a colourful barcode, intended to express what Koolhaas saw as the 'essence of the European project' - a common effort of a group of states retaining their own identities.

Links:
greylightprojects.org/what-the-flag/
verycontemporary.org/projects/wondertours-the-artist-project
oma.com/projects/the-image-of-europe
bureau-europa.nl/