For the Brussels Days 2021 KANAL-Centre Pompidou proposes a program that mainly takes place in public spaces. Indeed, the health crisis that we are going through has brought another look on the city as a space of games and expressions that artists have seized to better question it.
This notion of ‘being one’ with the city and those who animate it is a dear question to KANAL-Centre Pompidou which, beyond a new museum of modern and contemporary art, aims to become a cultural hub in the city.
The artistic program will be articulated around the central project Studio Cité of the Belgian artist Benjamin Vandewalle. It is a ‘laboratory’ project where the public is invited to live a playful experience in order to take a different look at the city.
Sometimes participative, sometimes contemplative, these different propositions of the Belgian cultural scene are engaged and denounce, not without a certain poetry, the multiple drifts of our current society. So many suggestions to question, (re)think the world while creating social links around a playful and artistic moment.
BENJAMIN VANDEWALLE 22>24/09 14h30>20h00
Location: Place Igor Stravinsky (Opposite the Centre Pompidou).
Over the past seven years, Belgian choreographer and dancer Benjamin Vandewalle has continuously studied the perception and apprehension of reality by creating a series of interactive installations. Set up in a travelling fairground village, these installations equipped with mirrors guide and divert the spectator’s eye to choreograph a different view of the city. A scene, an architectural detail, a perspective, lights suddenly illuminate this small urban theatre in a fascinating game of visual manipulation.
Helmets with visors, a cart on wheels, benches on wheels, portable structures, periscope kiosks, etc. In the small Studio Cité village, the installations created by the artist-choreographer offer us surprising discoveries simply by offering us a different way of viewing things. Guided through a frame, deflected by mirrors, our eyes discover a visual field that focuses on a detail or a movement. Transforming a public urban space into a multitude of fragmented theatrical scenes, these interactive devices create
a show from existing urban elements: streets, architecture, passers-by, trees, lights, etc.
The presence of the audience turns the installations into an artistic fairground, a merry- go-round for the eye, a space for social encounters and exchanges where strangers can share their experience. The choreographer invites us to take a fresh look at the everyday world around us. This expanded vision that immerses us in an astonishing fictional reality, raises the question of the multiplication of points of view and questions the possibility of the coexistence of multiple perspectives. Beware, then, of the landing!
MYRIAM VAN IMSCHOOT / YOUYOU GROUP 23/09 15h00>19h00
Location: Place Georges Pompidou.
On April 24th, 2021, 18 performers of the YouYou group performed MARS in Brussels, inside KANAL-Centre Pompidou’s building while the audience were outside in the street. The performance was broadcast live into the street by loudspeakers on the upper floor of the building.
The Centre-Pompidou welcomes the group now for an adapted version that takes place in the museum and on the adjacent square on September 23rd, 2021, during the Brussels Days.
MARS defies the border between interior and exterior spaces with the power of the human voice. A large group of performers, separated but visible behind the windows of the museum, broadcast a composition based on the trademark of the group, trills and ululations, live to the square. At times barely audible, then very loud, the performers spiral with movement and sound in a growing force field that aims an ‘entente’ with the hustle and bustle of public space. A place to exist and be heard.
Location: Place Georges Pompidou.
A black flag floats in continuous motion. The black flag cannot be linked to one particular battle and hence defies easy interpretation. Drawing inspiration from the many recent protests taking place around the globe, a diverse group of performers relay one another in a fascinating test of endurance. Their movements pass back and forth between inertia and hope, resistance, and powerlessness.
They each individually take on the responsibility to keep the flag moving, but it is the collective effort required that makes Relay such a powerful symbol. In this ‘unplugged’ version, presented out of doors, the performers partner with the wind to keep the flag afloat.
EN QUÊTE DES MARGES FLUCTUANTES
GUY WOUETÉ 22>24/09 12h00>20h00
Locations : Place Georges Pompidou, Palais de Justice, Place Maurice Quentin.
During the three Brussels Days, three people, including the Cameroon artist Guy Woueté, hold up banners in the public spaces. The banners that contain thoughts and texts, some of which were written by Woueté himself, fluctuate between poetic quotations and political claims/slogans. During En quête des marges fluctuantes, the bodies of performers are put to work in public spaces for eight hours a day, thus challenging how passers-by view work and working conditions.
What does ‘work’ mean today? What does statutory working time mean in a society where the people who work the most do not always have a job? With this sit-in performance, Guy Woueté refutes the well-known motto ‘work more in order to earn more’ and considers forms of visibility for those who work most without being benefiting from the 12 protective mechanisms associated with having a job. A situation that has been exacerbated over the last months of the pandemic, and against which no action has been planned.
Benjamin Vandewalle studied at the Royal Ballet School of Antwerp and graduated at
P.A.R.T.S. in Brussels in 2006. Since early on, the central theme in his work is perception. He creates movement – not only in the performer’s body but also in the spectator’s. His work is about sharing new experiences and perspectives with a large audience.
For the performances Birdwatching (2009) and One/Zero (2011), he worked closely with visual artist and scenographer Erki De Vries. In 2012 he stepped out of the black box into the public space. His mobile performance Birdwatching 4×4 was a festival favorite amongst audience and critics and toured for several seasons. Later on he created new works for the black box such as point of view ( 2013 ) and, in collaboration with Platform K, Common ground ( 2018 ), the last of which got selected for Het Theater Festival. Another work that he created worth mentioning is HEAR (2016) which is a sound choreography performed by a choir of 30 volunteers for a blindfolded audience. At this moment Benjamin is touring with his traveling art-fair called Studio Cité (2019) which is a collection of 8 performative installations for the public space and he is working on a new project called Journal d’un usager de l’espace (2021).
Benjamin Vandewalle is interested in dance education and is a dedicated teacher for children, amateurs, students as well as professionals. He was guest teacher at the KASK and MUDA and also created a guest choreography for Passerelle (Kortrijk, BE). He collaborated with the dance school Nyakaza in South Africa, launched the project Comfusao in Mozambique and, on two occasions, accompanied a group of
P.A.R.T.S. dance students during an exchange project in Senegal. Together with philosopher Jan Knops and a group of school children from Molenbeek (Brussels) he made the documentaries (un)usual and Movements.
Benjamin Vandewalle is Artist in Residence at Kaaitheater from 2017 to 2021.
MYRIAM VAN IMSCHOOT
Myriam Van Imschoot (1969) is a Brussels-based sound and performance artist since 2007. She holds an idiosyncratic place in the larger art field working in different media with numerous groups and their potentials in transitional societies. Her work has been presented nationally and internationally in galleries, musea, cinemas and theaters in Europe and the United States; This involves commissions from Sculpture International Rotterdam, Nodar Binaural Sound Center, Rumpsti-Pumsti (Musik), MUU Galeria, Hyoid, MaerzMusik festival, Kunsthal Extra City in Antwerp, etc.
Ula Sickle (CA/PL) is a choreographer and performer, living and working in Brussels (BE). She creates performances at the intersection of several disciplines, including dance, contemporary music, and the visual arts. Frequently centered around strong performers, she searches for forms of choreographic writing that can reveal the cultural coding and political power of ‘popular’ dancing or where the musicality and materiality of the body itself can take center stage.
Ula Sickle was artist in residence at Ujazdowski Centre for Contemporary Art in Warsaw and WIELS in Brussels. She is currently a PhD researcher at Luca School of Arts and KU Leuven. Her work has been presented in many international venues including Kaaitheater, KVS and Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels), Wiener Festwochen (Vienna), Serralves Museum (Porto), Moving in November (Helsinki), B:OM Festival (Seoul), Zürcher Theater Spektakel (Zurich), Tanz im August (Berlin), les Rencontres chorégraphiques internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis and Le 104 (Paris), among others.
Guy Woueté (1980, Douala, Cameroon) works in Antwerp and Douala. He studied sculpture and painting in Douala, Paris and Brussels (ERG) and won the Thami Mnyele Foundation Award in 2006. His career has since taken on a more international dimension, and he was awarded a residency at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten (Academy of Fine Arts) in Amsterdam (2009-2010). Using history as his primary material, Woueté seeks to shape a new future in which people see and understand themselves differently. In his videos, drawings, paintings, and installations, he engages us in a reflection on what we might learn from the past. His work has been exhibited around the world, including at the Lumumbashi Biennale (2019), Addis Foto Fest (2018), Dakar Biennale (2018), S.M.A.K. in Ghent (2018), Havana Biennial (2009), New Museum in New York (2009), and various film festivals in Rotterdam, Montreal, and Toronto. In 2018, he was one of eight candidates for the Vrienden van het S.M.A.K. | Coming People Prize (a biennial prize awarded by the Friends of the
S.M.A.K. to one of the young artists who have just graduated from a Belgian institute of higher learning in the visual arts.
« KANAL – Centre Pompidou was born out of the conviction that art and culture are fundamental to make people come together in a society which is more and more divided. It is the willingness to create a place where everyone will feel at home. »
Yves Goldstein, Director & Chief of Mission KANAL-Centre Pompidou.
A FUTURE CULTURAL HUB
The ambition of KANAL – Centre Pompidou is to offer a center of culture and exchange open to all, to put the creative scene of Brussels in the limelight, and to contribute to the capital’s cultural appeal.
Driven by the Brussels-Capital Region, this ambitious project seeks to provide Brussels with a cultural hub favourable to the aura of the capital of Europe. In the context of a ten-year partnership with the Centre Pompidou, the future KANAL – Centre Pompidou will not only house a museum of modern and contemporary art, but also the rich collections of architecture and urbanism of the CIVA Foundation. It will also accommodate many public spaces with a range of functions, including several stages for the performing arts.
Dates : 22.09.2021 – 24.09.2021
- 11:00 – 19:00: En Quête des Marges Fluctuantes – Place Georges
- 14:00 – 20:00: Studio Cité – Place Igor Stravinsky, in front of the Centre Pompidou
- 11:00 – 19:00: En Quête des Marges Fluctuantes – Palais de Justice de
- 14:00 – 20:00: Studio Cité – Place Igor Stravinsky, in front of the Centre Pompidou.
- 15:00 – 15:15: Mars #1 – Place Georges
- 17:00 – 17:15: Mars #2 – Place Georges
- 19:00 – 19:15: Mars #3 – Place Georges
- 11:00 – 19:00: En Quête des Marges Fluctuantes – Place Maurice
- 14:00 – 20:00: Studio Cité – Place Igor Stravinsky, in front of the Centre Pompidou.
- 15:00 – 20:00: Relay (Unplugged) – Place Georges
Caroline KADZIOLA – International and National Development Manager
+ 32 479 44 09 65
Press & Communication
Béatrice BEST – Communication & Sponsoring Manager
+ 32 495 29 04 10 | + 32 2 435 13 71
Thanks to the Centre Pompidou and the Centre Wallonie Bruxelles for their help and support in the setting up of this program. Thanks to the Brussels-Capital Region and visit.brussels for their invitation.