Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst (SMAK), Ghent
(2.9/5 based on 120+ reviews on the web)
The Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst is a relatively new museum located in Ghent, Belgium, and is renowned both for its permanent collection and for its provocative exhibitions.HistoryThe new museum opened to the public on 7 May 1999. The collection concentrates on international developments in art after 1945, and was based upon works collected by the Contemporary Art Museum Association (created on 8 November 1957 at the instigation of Karel Geirlandt) and the Museum voor Hedendaagse Kunst (set up in 1975 as the first Belgian museum devoted to contemporary art, housed in the Museum of Fine Arts, with Jan Hoet appointed as director).After Jan Hoet retired from the museum on December 1, 2003, Peter Doroshenko was in charge. After a trial period of one year, he was dismissed. The dismissal of Doroshenko caused much commotion. Artists and curators, headed by Luc Tuymans, feared for the future and independence of the museum. A petition was handed to the Chairman of the Board of Directors; culture vessels Sas Van Rouveroij. The dismissal was not reversed, but there were some changes in the organizational structure of the museum. Thus, Jan Hoet gave up his seat on the board of directors.Current directors are Philippe Van Cauteren (art director) and Philippe Vandenweghe (business director).
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Not a large museum but the quality was good. Information available in many languages. Installation by one artist covered entire floor. 
  • My girlfriend and I were-with few exceptions-not at all impressed with the current exhibition at the S.M.A.K. I understand that modern art is subjective, but when you as a visitor to wonder if you are still in the museum or at a yard, there is nevertheless something error. Fortunately, the entrance fee but € 2 for-25-year-olds.
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  • We have visited the S.M.A.K. among other portraits series of Alice Neel (up to mid-February 2017 also appeared in the gemeentemuseum Den Haag). The upper floor was closed due to construction of a new exhibition. For € 6 to within, for that reason. The format of the main areas was scarce, sober. We are not long remained. Can, of course, are that it is very dependent on what there is to see, but the collection artists fell. Alice Neel was the exception. The museum is not very easily accessible from the old town. Walking is best a little way and also tram 1 stops not very close to the museum.
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Google
  • Great collection, but the museum is to small. There are no self guided audio tours. Friendly service.
  • Beautiful setting right in the middle of Gent within the park. Grungy feeling with the off the beaten path art exhibits. I do recommend the lobby cafe with free WiFi on a hot summer afternoon...
  • all i can say about this place is...WOOOWWWW. very original, modern and very attractive and eye-catching.
  • I was there some time ago but the exhibition of modern art was very interesting. I had a nice sandwich and cafe before I went in. It is also not expensive to enter - I cannot remember exactly the price though. I saw someone reviewed this place one star because it was shut the day they went - I think that is really unfair. I had a great experience and told many friends about it.
  • Of all the museums I've visited around the world, SMAK is the most innovative. When I visited in summer 2014 they had positively absurd avant garde pieces, like a watermelon (yes, a real watermelon) laying there on the ground. It greatly expands the mind and challenges the visitor to think about art in a new way.