"We Belgians are used to seeing people have fun, get drunk, dance or do whatever else they please in this temple of emotions. To sober outsiders, cafés are an enigmatic territory, where a miracle potion is served. It's Harry instead of Asterix chez les Belges. In all likelihood, the photographer had to leave his comfort zone to better understand it. Taking a step back to see the bigger picture. Leaving to arrive. It's ironic that no other Belgian was able to preserve this culture as brilliantly as Gruyaert. I used the word preserve on purpose. Unlinke wine, beer is not stored. It is consumed as soon as possible. Perhaps that's why beer drinkers are so impatient when they're thirsty."
New publication by Harry Gruyaert with images taken in Ireland between 1983 and 1984.
"The guy from Flanders that I am and the guy from Flanders that Harry is and always will be — despite his universal relevance and deeply singular approach to his subjects, no matter how diverse they may be — unmistakably feel related to these Irish summers. The depicted ’80s are carved into our systems, and the sensibility and honesty of his observations echo in memories of my Flemish childhood. And possibly in his?" - from the introduction by Roger Szmulewicz.