I was going to be present on the opening of the cloudknitter story show but didn’t write down the address, thinking it was handelsbeurs wheras in fact it was oude beurs – by the time i figured it I had missed it so I went along next day early to have a look... and was surprised by the extensive show on offer – more or less encompassing the whole building which had obviously been vacated by the various city administration offices housed there until quite recently... wandering the halls one could enjoy the artwork in an unconventionally easygoing manner, the kind of show I hadn’t seen in a while, ‘expo sauvage’ style but a bit more structured... I preferred not to read up on names and such too much since it was the whole as a whole which seemed more important – a bit like the wall downstairs with postal mail art contributions from around the world, equally sharing the same space without selection on whichever subjective criteria... and maybe that sums up quite well the cloudknitter thing, radio, activity, read and see, sky being the limit or not even... going strong for quite a while now and no reason to stop.
mailing wall a bit like the one we did for secret archives continued at the HTH
Then off to the art-book fair at the academy, which I always enjoy but this time really couldn’t afford any of the goodies on display... pity because I did see some really interesting stuff – but had to be strict with myself – but could breathe some of the atmosphere and listen in on Luc Fierens de-presenting a L’unità text in the hallway... good for him to keep the battle-cry alive, and hopefully the fair will remain a mainly amateur (as in love of special books) event, while retaining the historical (antique) bookstand too...
Pit stop at home and off again
To the aptly named second room where Wout Vercammen presented a three-hour show... and wow, again he catches me unawares, unexpecting me again... so to speak. I was by chang re-reading the Pierre Cabanne interviews with Duchamp and the sapect of “even” in the bride stripped bare came to mind – non-sensical? Who nose – but the spacial refash that WV presented had that very Duchampian (duchampion) knack of again turning your attitude a knotch further than you might have imagined... and with nearly nothing than the space itself and a few builders aides such a laser spirit level and blacklight day-glo, a couple of led’s and some crumples aluminum foil... moon landing!
Couldn’t stay long cause had reserved for an evening of performance at the Brass in Brussels “crash text” and of course got stuck in heavy traffic (saturdays are as bad as weekday office hours!)
The presentations were good, though somewhat into the theatrical, which is something I like to be wary about – at some stage the performative becomes a theatre piece, especially when performed on a stage, with lighting and microphone – reading, conference and dance... a bit tricky?... but the other pieces were in situ public space, machine room... and as such passable... lighting had a tendency towards the theatrical, and there was quite a bit of mime (obviously proficient in that genre, but a tad too present... the compute dancing screens came close to the performative since the author was sitting there generating the teXt at the time... new-tech versions... I guess so. The only real impromptu textless runaround was by Dialogist-Kantor, a version specially adapted from two (or more) divergent pieces, a constant work in progress and very fitting here too. Bang slam guitar instead of calling names of things and stuff.
Back home to search for a parking space...
Up bright and early for a trip to Wetteren near Ghent. Loods 12 with vieux connaissance Baudouin Oosterlynck presenting his sonore instrumantarium (seen at Peruwelz not so long ago, with some additions) along with Dominique Rappez and Florian Kinques... Whereby Rappez caught my attention with a strange combination of philosophical drawing, painting re-transferred and surface qualities to make the experience one of reading rather than looking, sort of – not easy to describe.
Back towards Antwerp decided to have a look-see at the Chateau d’Ursel in Hingene where a ongoing artistic intervention project was taking place, and we had already missed. Knowingly too early, for we had another gig in the early afternoon, we just chanced it and with excellent result: We came across one of the participants, Gerard Herman, and he offered to give us a small tour in advance of the main offering that afternoon... a very agreeable experience of spooking about the castle and viewing the interventions with a leisurely eye... very becoming, and the small one-figured soccer games table he presented in a small room upstairs a very good intervention indeed, lonely writer’s garret with only a small wall to kick against.
Other works were good too, the nearby mystifying and intriguing presence of Denicolai & Provoost, for instance with calculations stamped – reproduced even on the windows overlooking the park... hmm. Considering the price of a daydream... enjoyed crawling through the barricaded hallway Luc Deleu devised, twisted together beams, making sure no damage is done to the doorframe, cushioned by ‘red jacket’ brochures... referring to the theme and person to which this whole project is dedicated: Emile Verhaeren, who lived just upstream at St. Amands.
Downstairs lots of information on the recent history of this kind of art – one of the curators Vaast C was busy with a journalist and the main hall was filling with guided tourists and conference-goers... time to head out again.
(did our familiar duty with coffee and chocolate cake, quite agreeable)
Heading for the last venue north of Antwerp, another castle, or rather manor house: Hof Ter Bist, where artists could intervene in & out – a project curated by Nadia Bijl, which was a refreshing look at some basic premises... though concentrated mainly about the manor house it was a wide ranging jaunt through today’s practice while not encumbering too much on the surroundings... works integrated in the existing picture worked well, while inside effectiveness ranged from using mainly the surroundings as well as just plain presentation... including one sound-set...
An agreeable round-about and perhaps the best way to take in all the various offerings... for it is sheer impossible to see all – as opposed to not so long ago when one was glad to find something going on...