Agenda Thursday 26th September

Opening Open Skies on Thursday 26th September at WIELS, Brussels

Challenging the ever-growing calls for transparency, Open Skies draws on the works of seven artists whose very practices seek to elude the global supremacy of the like-button, evade the elevator pitch or entangle the reductive statement of intent. Instead, they create works that ambiguously play with masks and codes, projections and fantasies, at the intersection of language, popular culture and technology. Including works by Luiza Crosman, Helen Dowling, Toon Fibbe, Naïmé Perrette, Leander Schönweger, Emmanuel Van der Auwera and Jelena Vanoverbeek, Open Skies suggests mystery, shadow, and nuance as modern-day forms of resistance. file View the event on Facebook

Stuk Start from Thursday 26th to Saturday 28th September at Stuk, Leuven

Ushering in its new season, Stuk goes all out with a weekend-long festivals consisting of 10 live acts, five installations and no less than two club nights. On the bill, Miet Warlop, Rizan Said, Zoë McPherson, Walter Hust, The Word Radio residents Exalt and Cabasa and many others. Expect Decap organ-enabled 90s rave, stirring grooves from masked saxophonists ad immersive installations that sit on the cusp of light, video and laser interventions. file View the event on Facebook

Pull up a Chair! Connect to the city! On Thursday 26th September at Vooruit, Ghent

Connections, informal gatherings, intimacy. All these are subjects that all too often seem to be relegated to the background when, in fact, they form the very core of humanity and should be further nurtured. Taking as starting point the potential of a dinner table to weave strong and meaningful links between individuals of all sorts, Pull up a Chair! Connect to the city! invites policymakers, journalists, modern thinkers, artists, biologists, rappers, slam poets and historians to share their insight on the matter with guests not playing their usual role of (passive?) audience but very much intervening as co-creators of the evening. A refreshing opportunity to come together. file View the event on Vooruit's website

Bledarte Days on Friday 27th and Saturday 28th September at Beursschouwburg, Brussels

Two days of activist-inclined movies, talks, workshops and dancefloor-necessities curated by the Bledarte crew, the Brussels-based women-only collective making waves for its unrestrictive and unapologising work shining a light on the issues faced by minority communities in Belgium. Top of our lists are screenings of Tarek Lakhrissi’s Out of Blue and Néhémie Lemal’s On ne peut plus rien dire, a talk questioning the mental impact on North African men of the police force’s discriminatory stop and search policy, a reading on stories of social work in challenging schools and neighbourhoods as well as DJing workshop. Offering a much-need different perspective on the challenges facing today’s youth, Bledarte continue in its quest to give a voice and a platform to the oft-forgotten. Full support. file View the event on Facebook

10 years of Razen on Saturday 28th September at Les Ateliers Claus, Brussels

Celebrating ten years straddling the local experimental circuit as well as their latest release Ayîk Adhîsta, Adhîsta Ayîk, Razen come back to the place where it all started, Les Ateliers Claus, for a special celebratory performance. Expect the usual adventures in medieval tradition, ethno-acoustic elements and otherworldly vibrations with no less than two concerts: a first one opening the night in their original, two-piece formation and a second one closing the night with their current iteration. Also on the bill will be French multi-instrumentalist Thomas Bloch performing his recent collaboration with harpist Pauline Haas. file View the event on Facebook

Cosmic Pop Records x Shayto Badjoko on Saturday 28th September at Palazzo, Brussels

Marking the beginning of their residency at creative co-working space Palazzo, fuzzed-out hip hop imprint and The Word Radio residents Cosmic Pop invite beloved and talented local tattoo artist Shayto Badjoko whose Bauhaus series will have your lining up to get inked. file View the event on Facebook

Joyeuse Ouverture 2019 on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September at Brass, Brussels

Forest’s Brass cultural centre marks the start of a new season with a weekend of both adult and kid fun. On the program: four exhibitions (one of which shows the work of David Delruelle, pictured below), photography workshops, concerts, audio neighbourhood walks and the chance to see Henry Wessel’s solo show at the Foundation Stichting just a few hundred meters away. Culture with an educational and participatory twist. file View the event on Facebook

“P3 - Can we talk in private” on Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September at 019, Ghent

Playing on the temporary nature of the parking lot as a footnote to the road and the romanticised notion of travel, “Can we talk in private” - a group show held in the context of the street art festival Sorry, Not Sorry – draws on the research and works of six artists that exploit the full potential of the traditionally urbanised landscape, reacting to its shifting nature. In addition to the exhibition, 019 will screen the new short movie “Wat voor fiets met verchroomd stuur achter bij de aanlegplaats?” by Belgian filmmaker Robbrecht Desmet onto its celebrated side billboard, with seating space in the middle of the parking lot itself.
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Ashpalt on Saturday 28th September at DOK, Ghent

Lena Willikens, JASS, OKO DJ and Music Mania head honcho Borat take on deck duties – say no more. file View the event on Facebook

Opening Liselotte Vloeberghs on Saturday 28th September at Komplot, Brussels

Attempts to be more kind, lesson 1: Practicing ways of saying hello. “Hallo!” Attempts to be more kind, lesson 2: Introducing your name and your activities. “My name is Lieselotte.” And? “In the past month I have been researching the many levels of kindness. (The material, the coincidental, the spiritual, the social, the animistic, the energetic, …”) More? “I guess in another way it could be called community arts for shy artists.” Something else? “Also I would like you to feel more than welcome to have a look at the findings next Saturday the 28th of September in Chateau Nour.” Very good. BBQ at 12 then garden party and pizza at 6pm for the outdoor film screening. file View the event on Facebook

Designing the Night until 29th September at ADAM, Brussels

ADAM’s comprehensive exhibition dedicated to the visual identity of Belgian nightlife through the decades, Design the Night harnesses the oft-forgotten but no less instrumental branding genius of clubs in positioning the country’s clubs internationally. Drawing on flyer and poster designs from such iconic local nightlife staples as Mirano, Fuse, Plan K, Boccaccio, La Roca, Carré and countless others, the show pays tribute to the unique graphic styles that ensured dancefloor-ready crowds turned up, powered the night forward. With just 10 days to go before closing, make sure to catch this essential exhibition. file View the event on ADAM's website

Jan Kempenaers - Colonial Monuments in Belgium until 13th October at Mu.Zee, Ostende

Belgian photographer Jan Kempenaers – maybe best known for his Spomenik series documenting long-lost communist monuments in Yugoslavia – focuses his lenses closer to home this time, honing in on the shockingly prevalent presence of monuments erected in honour of King Leopold II’s Congo Free State. Through a revealing series of 40-strong images, Kempenaers goes beyond mere documentary intentions, using each photograph to question these monuments’ legitimacy, what they say about the country’s past colonial transgressions (to put it mildly) and whether these still belong in the public space. Juxtaposing some of his photographs with other pictures from his Spomenik series or other artworks from Mu.Zee’s collection, the exhibition makes for powerful, if somewhat uneasy, viewing. Essential. file View the event on Mu.Zee's website

Carey Young - Palais de Justice until 19th October at La Loge, Brussels

Palais de Justice (2017), Carey Young’s critically-acclaimed video installation, was filmed covertly at the Palais de Justice in Brussels. Contradicting the familiar patriarchal culture of law, Young's camera depicts female judges and lawyers at court. Sitting at trial and delivering judgments, female judges were filmed through a series of circular windows in courtroom doors, without the knowledge or permission of anyone depicted. Young subtly builds a counter-narrative: a legal system seemingly centred on, and perhaps controlled by women, as if male presence may be optional or unnecessary in this particular future. This ambitious piece develops and extends the body of law-related artwork which Carey Young has created for more than seventeen years into timely concerns with gender, power and the cinematic. file View the exhibition on La Loge's website

Emmanuel Van der Auwera until 3rd November at Botanique, Brussels

Through his near-scientific series of films, video installations and conceptual projects that touch upon the traumas, stories and media education of the digital era, Brussels-based artist Emmanuel Van der Auwera explores formal and conceptual filters, questioning the processes of representation and the transmission of images assembled from contemporary mass media. In his film “The Sky is on Fire” - presented at Brussels’ Botanique and part of a diptych also on show at Harlan Levey Gallery - the artist interrogates digital culture and memory through a virtual reconstruction of the urban landscape of Miami, deadening its back streets through the use of technology that can scan the environment using a smartphone. In “The Death of K9 Cigo,” the diptych’s second film, Van der Auwera addresses the collective consciousness through the tributes paid to K9 Cigo, a police dog killed by gunfire in Florida. Heavy-hitting and giving the viewer much to chew on, Van der Auwera’s work is both a reflection of the times we live in and a damning commentary of them. Essential. file View the exhibition on Botanique's website

Gabriel Kuri: Sorted, Resorted until 5th January at WIELS, Brussels

Mexican mixed-media artist Gabriel Kuri, who refers to himself as a “selector”, creates sculptures that incorporate questions of value, arresting usually intangible flows of information in witty and engaging forms. His practice is strikingly material and his exhibition at WIELS adopts material as its organizing principle, sorting his works into four distinct categories: paper, plastic, metal, and construction materials. This is an absurdly simplistic approach to complex, conceptually driven works that are rarely made of just one element. file View the exhibition on WIELS' website

Lost & Found North-7 Expedition until 20th January at Muhka, Antwerp

Founded in 2013 by students from St. Petersburg’s School for Young Artists, North-7 is an artists’ collective that engages with themes such as identity and politics, experimenting with a wide range of media in which performances play a central role. For its intervention at Muhka, the collective have created a museum in the form of a classical temple which contains a comprehensive archive of all their artistic projects and activities to date. file View the exhibition on Muhka's website