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About me

Barbara Iweins is a Belgian photographer who started her artistic career in Amsterdam. A collector since a tender age, Barbara classifies, gathers and archives her photographic subjects according to strict criteria. She mostly draws inspiration from literature (Edouard Levé, Siri Husvedt, Zweig, Kundera…) and contemporary art (Christian Boltanski, Jan Saudek, Francis Bacon).

Fascinated by the vulnerability of humans and beauty in imperfection, she successively pushes the boundaries on what is deemed intimate. In her series “Au coin de ma rue”, she entered bit by bit into the private life of strangers. In her project 7AM/7PM, she invited these same strangers to sleep at her house, to capture the moment a person opens his eyes for the first time (“the only moment of the day a person doesn’t have any shield. The only moment where the world hasn’t hurt us yet.”). Her series “Bath” captures priceless moments of solitude and quietude (or, as she would put it: “water silences one’s inner racket of thoughts”).

Since her return to Brussels in 2016, Barbara has retreated into her own world where she lives like a hermit, working on her newest project KATALOG. For KATALOG, Barbara took 12,795 photos of all 12,795 objects she owns to find an aesthetic emotion in the assembly of elements that, at first sight, may seem out of place or even tasteless. Katalog is a radical confrontation with her possessions. It’s also the first time she used her private life as a case study.

Barbara graduated from the communication and journalism school, IHECS in Brussels (BE). She worked for several years in film distribution and production. In 2009 she started photography and has since been exhibited as a solo artist at Street Lab Amsterdam (NL, 2010), Atelier Relief Brussels (BE, 2016), Parlement Francophone Bruxellois (BE, 2018), and at Les Rencontres Internationales de la photographie d'Arles (FR, 2022).

The book “Katalog” was published by Delpire&co in June 2022. Barbara’s work has been featured in Le Monde, Liberation, CNN, BBC and many more.










Katalog, L’Appartement – Espace Images Vevey, Switzerland

Katalog, Photo Art Center Hangar, Brussels, Belgium

Katalog, Le Centre photographique Rouen Normandie, France

Katalog, Museum Villa Rot, Burgrieden, Germany

Katalog, Les Rencontres d'Arles, Photosynthèses, Arles, France

Soie, Parlement Francophone Bruxellois, Belgium

Bath, Atelier Relief Brussels, Belgium

Au coin de ma rue, Street Lab Amsterdam, Holland

“Mais l’essentiel est bien cette investigation systématique, d’où ressort une certaine forme d’angoisse : c’est cela qui me touche le plus. La scénographie intime de l’exposition recrée un espace domestique, une forme d’enfermement dans le casanier.”

“En collectionneuse «obsessionnelle» et «fétichiste», l’artiste belge Barbara Iweins a fait l’inventaire de tous les objets de sa sphère privée créant une accumulation qui laisse le visiteur arlésien pantois et admiratif.”

Screenshot 2022-08-18 at 16-07-49 Rencontres d’Arles – Katalog, une vie en inventaire kopi

“Cela a probablement un lien avec une angoisse très ancienne : celle de devenir un jour SDF. Inconsciemment, c’est comme si cette surabondance d’objets jouait un rôle de bouclier. Je me sens moins démunie entourée de toutes ces choses.”

Octobre 7, 2022

July 12, 2022

July 16, 2022


June 22, 2020


August 23, 2016


August 18, 2016


August 25, 2022


July 20, 2022


August 23, 2016


July 7, 2022


August 22, 2022

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