Tom Bogaert, 2023

Vendelzwaaier – Flaggenwerfer

Wall hanging, flagwaver, aluminium table, folders

Vendelzwaaier – Flaggenwerfer, respectively Flemish and German for “flag thrower,” is arguably his most personal work to date, the cycle being concerned with his youth as a member of a flag thrower’s association. These traditional associations date back to the Middle Ages and, play an important role for the visual language of the so-called “Flemish movement” in the Belgian region of Flanders. Superficially a movement concerned with the promotion of Flemish culture and the Dutch language, it was partially co-opted by extremists using its platform to advocate for Flemish independence with nationalism and xenophobia at the centre of their agendas. When Tom Bogaert found an old notebook containing pictures from his own time as a flag thrower, he began to wonder how it had been possible to unwittingly throw around the Flemish flag emblazoned with a lion as a teenager. Subsequently, he began collecting photos, videos, and archival material, presented for the first time at IKOB.

Link to the IKOB exhibition