Servaas Van Belle: Stal, Vernacular Animal Sheds
“STAL is the first and only book to serenade these nameless, often accidental, sculptures standing on their pedestals of wet grass in fields full of incense.”
— Stephan Vanfleteren
For this unique book, photographer Servaas Van Belle scouted every corner of Belgium to find just the right kind of shed, always photographing them in the same perfect lighting conditions. And for Van Belle ‘perfect’ means in a haze of fog.
Livestock shelters in meadows and fields are so common in the Belgian landscape and culture that nobody ever pays them any attention. Nonetheless, the countryside offers quite a range of architectural gems. These sheds and barns are the product of man and nature, quietly radiating a poignant if decaying beauty. They come in many shapes and sizes, are constructed from motley materials (often recycled) and exhibit a varied colour palette. Clearly showing the ravages of time, they tell wordless stories that Servaas Van Belle can capture like no other.
Published on the occasion of Van Belle’s exhibition in Cultuurcentrum Scharpoord in Knokke-Heist from 26 March until 12 June 2022.