Bart Smits

Bart studied economics at Sint-Gummarus College and then trained to be a librarian. He is currently working as a volunteer at a library of world religions in Wilrijk. He is also a cartoonist for the virtual newspaper Zonder Graten.

At the Facktorij, an art studio attached to the PC Bethanië in Zoersel which was established in 2004, Bart has developed into one of the most prolific artists. He works according to fixed schedules, as if he were “going to the office” for a few days, on an impressive work of mainly small, very colourful canvases that are often wryly witty.

In addition, Bart applies himself to digital techniques at home; according to him, he has produced more than 4,000 drawings in collages and photographs edited with Photoshop, which often end up as image gags.

Bart Smits’ paintings reveal a colourful harmony between fresh, cartoonish elements and expressions of mental pain, anxiety and loneliness. This repeatedly restored balance between the witty use of colour and mental suffering forms the intrinsic element of Bart Smits’ artistic work.

Bart is an inexhaustible source of creativity; he often works fast, as if it were hard to keep up with the pace of his own inspiration. 

His discipline and productivity are constantly at odds with his day-to-day well-being, as is the case with many outsider artists. Although this conflict is by no means obvious, it is pressing and necessary for people like Bart, as well as for his colleagues from the Facktorij. 

Bart Smits has previously exhibited at the gallery of the Outsider Art Centre in Amsterdam and his work has also been shown at the Outsider Art Fair in New York.


Manu Bruynseraede 

(one of the co-founders and permanent members of the Facktorij)



  • De Facktorij - PC BethaniĆ« Andreas Vesaliuslaan 39 2980 Zoersel