Thibaut de Ruyter, born in 1972 in Lille (France), is a trained architect. He has been living and working in Berlin as an independent curator and an art and architecture critic since 2001.
During his architectural studies in Lille and Copenhagen, Thibaut de Ruyter developed a professional practice that combines art, architecture and theory. He subsequently worked with Hartware MedienKunstVerein in Dortmund on a number of exhibitions, addressing themes such as the use of radio and audiotape technology to capture ‘ghostly voices’; the industrial legacy in subculture and contemporary art; and flight simulation and its influence on visual art. From 2012 to 2013 he was involved in the restructuring of the Museum Angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt am Main, originally designed by Richard Meier. In 2013, following the renovation phase, De Ruyter curated The Empty House, an exhibition held in the 4,500 m2 building before its contents were re-installed; for two days and a night, the empty museum space was presented to visitors as an exhibit in its own right.
Two years later, also at the Museum Angewandte Kunst, De Ruyter curated Richard Meier – A Style Room, a cabinet exhibition devoted to the American architect, his influences and the 1980s zeitgeist. De Ruyter has curated the Nam June Paik Award for the Arts Foundation of North Rhine-Westphalia (Kunststiftung NRW) on two occasions: in 2010 at the Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf, and in 2012 at the Kunstmuseum Bochum. In 2012 he also curated the exhibition at the CTM Festival in Berlin, and in 2015 he developed Digitale Demenz (Artificial Intelligence), an exhibition for EIGEN + ART Lab in Berlin.
Thibaut de Ruyter’s educational activities include organizing workshops and giving lectures, among others at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, the Villa Arson in Nice, the Ecole nationale supérieure d’art in Bourges and la maison rouge – fondation antoine de galbert in Paris. He is also the founder of the Autocenter Summer Academy in Berlin.
As an art and architecture critic, De Ruyter regularly writes for the magazines artpress, Il Giornale dell’Architettura, Fucking Good Art and Frieze d/e, and also contributes to catalogue publications. He has edited two special issues of artpress – one in 2006 about Berlin, the other in 2014 about prostitution (co-edited by Catherine Millet). In 2015 he co-founded ALUAN, the first Kazakh art magazine, with Gaisha Madanova. De Ruyter writes a monthly blog about architecture books for the website www.architectuul.com and has been a member of the French section of AICA (International Association of Art Critics) since 2008.
In 2014, as the recipient of a Goethe-Institut grant, Thibaut de Ruyter spent six weeks travelling around Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, researching the art scenes of both countries in preparation for a touring exhibition he has developed with Inke Arns; this will be presented at the Goethe Institutes in the Eastern Europe/Central Asia region in 2016–17.
• „Digitale Demenz (Artificial Intelligence)“ (Künstler: Erik Bünger, John Cale, Brendan Howell, Chris Marker, Julien Prévieux, Suzanne Treister, !Mediengruppe Bitnik), Eigen+Art Lab, Berlin, 2015
• „Richard Meier - Ein Stilraum“, Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt/Main, 2015
• „BER-DTM-HNL…“ co-kuratiert mit Inke Arns (Künstler: Agnes Meyer-Brandis, Martin Dammann, Antje Ehmann & Harun Farocki, Johan Grimonprez, Francis Hunger & Cornelia Friederike Müller, Simone Aaberg Kærn und Joan Leandre), Hartware MedienKunstverein, Dortmund, 2014
• „The Corpse of Art“ (Künstler: IRWIN), NuN, Berlin, 2014
• „The Empty House“ (Künstler: Olaf Nicolai), Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt/Main, 2013
• „Ghosts of the Shelf“ (Künstler: Theo Altenberg, La Boîte à Gants Productions (Gilles Berquet & Mirka Lugosi), Barbara Breitenfellner, Martin Dammann, Valerie Favre, Jason Forrest, Christian Gfeller, Richard Grayson, Graf Haufen, Elke Silvia Krystufek, Joep van Liefland, Ingrid Luche, Jacek Niegoda, Yokna Patofa, Jorge Queiroz, Monica Ross, Christian Vialard, Alexandra Vogt, Kunstraum Kreuzberg / Bethanien), CTM, Berlin, 2012
• „Nam June Paik Award“ (Künstler: Burak Arikan, Cevdet Erek, Florian Hecker, Thomas Köner, Gisela Motta & Leandro Lima, Nomeda & Gediminas Urbonas, Carlos Fadon Vicente, Erika Hock, Congress, Nam June Paik), Kunstmuseum, Bochum, 2012
• „Nam June Paik Award“ (Künstler: Rosa Barba, Eike, Ei Wada, Chelpa Ferro, 4nchor5 la6, Ali Kazma, Ignas Krunglevicius, Hajnal Németh, Adriane Wachholz, Thorsten Hallscheidt), Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, 2010
• „Wach sind nur die Geister“, co-kuratiert mit Inke Arns (Künstler: Lucas & Jason Ajemian, Archiv eines anonymen Geistersehers kuratiert von hans w. koch, Sam Ashley, Corinne May Botz, Erik Bünger, Damien Cadio, Michael Esposito, Nina Fischer/Maroan el Sani, Agnès Geoffray, Kathrin Günter, Carl Michael von Hausswolff, Tim Hecker, Susan Hiller, Martin Howse, International Necronautical Society, Friedrich Jürgenson, Joep van Liefland, Chris Marker, Jorge Queiroz, Scanner, Jan Peter E.R. Sonntag, Suzanne Treister), Hartware MedienKunstverein, Dortmund, 2009