Vleeshal is a center for contemporary art in Middelburg, recognized for versatile, vibrant and vital projects presented both within the walls of its unique Gothic exhibition space and beyond. Browse the archive


Vleeshal invites (inter)national artists to develop new works especially for its atypical exhibition space. Every three months, Vleeshal hosts a new solo or group exhibition, which can consist of works ranging from film, video, performance, audio, painting and installation. View our next exhibition

Nomadic Program

In 2015, Vleeshal kicked off its Nomadic Program as an extension of its existing exhibition program taking place in Middelburg. Within this series, Vleeshal expands its mission to provide space for experimentation and examines what it means to present artworks in unusual contexts.

The curators of the Nomadic Program for 2022–2023 are Nomaduma Rosa Masilela and Thiago de Paula Souza. The program revolves around the question: How do we learn to love each other while we are embattled on so many fronts? Browse How do we learn...?

Vleeshal Publications

Since 1975, Vleeshal has made over 300 publications including monographs, critical analyses and catalogues on artists who have exhibited at Vleeshal. One copy of each book is included as part of the Vleeshal Library, which is on long-term loan to the Zeeuwse Bibliotheek. Browse Publications


Vleeshal’s aim is to create an open space for anyone interested in contemporary art. Inclusivity and accessibility are paramount. By providing free entrance on designated days and organising educational events in the form of lectures and workshops, Vleeshal invites everyone to participate in the conversation about contemporary art. Browse Education

Zeeland Focus

As the only contemporary art institution in Zeeland, Vleeshal places great importance in maintaining its local network, working with artists from the region, participating in local events as well as maintaining the municipality’s art collection. Vleeshal is also responsible for the direction of council policy regarding subsidies for local artists and additionally organises the Vleeshal Art Prize. Browse Zeeland Focus


Vleeshal manages an impressive collection of contemporary art, consisting of acquired works that sit alongside works donated by local and (inter)national artists. It also manages some forty works of art in Middelburg's public spaces. Several projects realised by Vleeshal over the years have also directly related to artworks in its collection. Browse Collection


Why does a medium-sized city like Middelburg need art that at first glance looks new and strange? Art that for many residents is not immediately recognisable, beautiful or enticing? The kind of art that has been shown and made at Vleeshal for decades? Essentially, the answer is a lot simpler than the question suggests. Contemporary art of the kind that Vleeshal shows prepares us for the new, for what is unfamiliar, for what we do not yet know. It is as unknown as the future that lies ahead.

– Ann Demeester, former member of Vleeshal Supervisory Board

Vleeshal presents experimental contemporary art to the widest possible audience and does so at the cutting edge. High-level art, as current as possible and of international importance, is shown in a challenging context. Due to its unique home base in Middelburg—located in the suburbs on the one hand, and with its distinctive architectural setting on the other—Vleeshal is able to challenge artists to broaden their practice and provoke surprise and reflection in visitors.

Vleeshal contributes to the development of international art by inviting promising artists, often at the beginning of their artistic careers, to create new work for its exceptional exhibition space in dialogue with the institution. Imposing proportions, pointed Gothic arches and a tiled floor in a chessboard pattern make this former market hall a welcome but demanding alternative to the usual 'white cube'. Here, Vleeshal offers artists a much-needed space for radical artistic experimentation, both literally and figuratively. Its rich history shows that working with Vleeshal has often triggered a vital turning point for artists in deepening their practice.


Residing in what was once Middelburg’s meat market, then the former town hall, Vleeshal (English: meat hall) is characterized by its distinct Gothic architecture. The unique venue has inspired many artists to create extraordinary exhibitions, bringing Vleeshal international renown.

From 2000 to 2017, Vleeshal organized exhibitions in a second venue on Zusterstraat, formerly known as De Kabinetten van de Vleeshal (English: The Cabinets of the Vleeshal). The Zusterstraat building offered Vleeshal clean white walls in more intimate spaces. As a result of municipal cutbacks, Vleeshal Zusterstraat closed on October 1, 2017.


Vleeshal began as a venue of the Gemeentelijke Culturele Dienst Middelburg (CDM), a body for local culture established in 1975 with the purpose of creating an art collection. In 1992, the organisation restructured and was renamed to Stichting Beeldende Kunst Middelburg (SBKM), the statutory name still in common use.

Middelburg Municipal Cultural Service (CDM)

1975–1982 Johan Vuyk, head of CDM
1976–1978 Piet van Dalen, curator of De Vleeshal
1979–1982 William Verstraeten, curator of De Vleeshal
1982–1991 Anton van Gemert, head of CDM

Middelburg Fine Arts Foundation (SBKM)

1991–1992 Barbara Claassen-Schmal
1992–1993 Wim Don
1993–1999 Lex ter Braak
2000–2008 Rutger Wolfson
2008–2014 Lorenzo Benedetti
2014–current Roos Gortzak

When Roos Gortzak became director, she was curious about how her predecessors dealt with certain issues. What was their first exhibition in the Gothic hall? How did they establish a relationship with this atypical exhibition space? How did they involve Middelburg? Gortzak decided to ask these and other questions to the three directors who preceded her: Lex ter Braak, Rutger Wolfson and Lorenzo Benedetti.


Director & curator
Roos Gortzak

Deputy director
Cécile Bloys van Treslong

Marketing, communication & development
Nienke van der Wal

Content & copywriter
Veerle Driessen

Nomadische curatoren
Nomaduma Rosa Masilela & Thiago de Paula Souza

Curatorial assistant
Adriënne van der Werf

Assistant curator Vleeshal Commissions 'Hop to Hope'
Martha Jager

Managing editor Vleeshal Publications
Julia Steenhuisen

Executive secretary & financial administration
Hanna Verhulst

Education in collaboration with Kunsteducatie Walcheren & Centrum Kunst- en Cultuureducatie Oosterschelderegio
Adriënne van der Werf

Host coordinator
Theresa Schipper

Marijn Adams, Anne Boesveld, Ramone Bendt, Bjorn de Nooijer, Lotte Dooms, Kars Hamelink, Ruth Hengeveld, Amy Hintjens Little, Nienke van Houwelingen, Auke van Laar, Ploen Mevis, Jochem Pannekoek, Jasmijn Roijen, Joanne Scott-Smith, Robyn Tieman, Maaike Wisse

Shadow Brand®

Website editors
Shadow Brand®
Roos Gortzak
Bibi van Scholten
Cathelijne Tiel
Luuk Vulkers


For press inquiries and general information please contact us at

+31 (0)118 652 200


Vleeshal is a non-profit organisation registered as Stichting Beeldende Kunst Middelburg with the Dutch Chamber of Commerce (RSIN: 8032.05.089).

Office and postal address

Simpelhuisstraat 7
4331 PH Middelburg
The Netherlands

Statutory objectives

SBKM aims to:

  • Organise activities in the field of contemporary art;
  • Manage the municipal collection of contemporary art

Remuneration policy

The director receives a salary. Members of the Supervisory Board receive travel costs to and from the meeting.

Supervisory Board

Monique van Beek, Iris Cornelis, Ann Demeester, Jerry Troy

Policy plan & Annual reports

Policy plan (NL)

Current policy plan

Annual reports (NL)

Jaarverslag 2017
Jaarverslag 2018
Jaarverslag 2019
Jaarverslag 2020
Jaarverslag 2021
Jaarverslag 2022

Financial reports (NL)

Jaarrekening 2017
Jaarrekening 2018
Jaarrekening 2019
Jaarrekening 2020
Jaarrekening 2021
Jaarrekening 2022


Vleeshal receives financial support from the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the municipality of Middelburg.