Kunst & Zwalm 2021 [english]

28 & 29 of August, 4 & 5, 11 & 12 of September
From 11h to 18h
Departure: Sint-Dionysius Church of Sint-Denijs-Boekel (Vredesplein 36, 9630 Zwalm)

Since 1997, Kunst & Zwalm has been a biannual art route in the Zwalm area. Artists create in situ art works or perform interventions in the landscape and/or including local residents. 

kunst & zwalm invites croxhapox invites remi verstraete

bjorn pauwels & nora de decker. community of listeners. cosco. daniël dewaele. freek willems. georgia kokot. hans beckers. ieke trinks. karel thienpont. OD3 collectief. lieve d’hondt. museums of belgium. nathalie chambart. rasa alksnyte. samah hijawi. stefanie claes. taart in de brievenbus. willem vermeersch. + pKp (para instituut voor KUNST en precariteit / para institute for ART and precarity).

Kunst & Zwalm 2021
For the edition of 2021, BOEM vzw invited croxhapox, the Ghent-based platform for contemporary arts. In turn, the artistic leaders of croxhapox, Samira El Khadraoui and Anyuta Wiazemsky Snauwaert, introduced Remi Verstraete as a co-curator. In 2022, croxhapox will bring ex situ art works, experiences, interventions and participatory trajectories back to Ghent.
The route
This year, the route is conceived as a full day experience, with around 8 kilometers of interactive, participatory and visual art works, providing sufficient resting points and catering options along the way. You can complete the course by walking or follow an alternative parcours for less mobile participants. If you prefer to explore the route at a faster pace, you’re also welcome by bike.
Tickets
Register for a day ticket (8 euro) now by clicking this link. During Kunst & Zwalm, students (5 euro) and ‘Uitpas’ users are welcome to buy tickets at a reduced rate at the register. Soon, we’ll release the evening programme with concerts and cosy dinners, for which additional tickets will become available.

The programme

Every Saturday and Sunday, we welcome you at Kunst & Zwalm 2021 to follow the art route between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. You can plan your visit in advance, or buy a ticket on the spot.
In addition to the art route and freely accessible performances, you can also attend an evening program and performances with a limited audience. Reservation is required for this. Discover the various activities below and book your ticket via this link.

Saturday 28 August

Samah Hijawi - Chasing Za'atar
In this performance dinner, Samah Hijawi shares her reflections on the diaspora of plants and humans throughout a meal. We literally eat our way through the history of za’atar.

Performance only accessible after reservation.
1 p.m. – 2 p.m., Peace Square, Sint-Denijs-Boekel
Tickets: 20 euros, reservation is required.
Pay attention: this doesn’t include your day ticket!
With the support of Kunstenwerkplaats, A. M. Qattan Foundation, Palestine, Vlaamse Gemeenschap VGC, Vooruit and Beursschouwburg.

Evening programme
7 p.m – around 11 p.m., Vredesplein, Sint-Denijs-Boekel, including a walk of approximately 4,5k.Tickets: 39 euros (day ticket included), reservation is required.

  • Samah Hijawi – Chasing Za’atar
    In this performance dinner, Samah Hijawi shares her reflections on the diaspora of plants and humans throughout a meal. We literally eat our way through the history of za’atar.
  • Karel Thienpont – Oh mother Mary… pimp my retirement home
    Karel Thienpont collaborated with inhabitants of the residential care center ‘Huize Roborst’, contemplating their dreams for the future. “What if you win the lotto?” With the lottery numbers of the nursing home residents, he creates a live lotto draw.
  • Freek Willems – This is not my cat
    Freek Willems takes you along the art route with a guided walk of approximately 6k, in which his encounters with cats from the area around Zwalm play an important role.
  • Hans Beckers  – Landscape’s concert
    An intimate concert in the church of Korsele building on the collage of stories you can discover in Beckers’ ‘The silence of the Geuzenhoek’.

Saturday 4 September

Community of Listeners
Community of Listeners – Blijf bij ons want het zal avond worden (Stay with us, because it will become night)
Performance only accessible after reservation:
Cemetery Protestant Church of Korsele, 3.45 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Free entrance, reservation is required. 
Evening programme
5 p.m – around 10 p.m., Kromstraat 30, Horebeke including a walk of approximately 4,5k.
Tickets: 39 euros (day ticket included), reservation is required.

Programme: 

  • Freek Willems – This is not my cat
    Freek Willems takes you along the art route with a guided walk of approximately 4,5k, in which his encounters with cats from the area around Zwalm play an important role.
  • Oracle
    Rasa Alksnyte invited Oracle (Michel Yang, Caroline Daish and Justine Maxelon) for a performance as a reaction to Alksnyte’s work for Kunst & Zwalm. Improvising with their eyes closed, the collective learns (you) to discover the space.
  • Marthe Marynissen en pKp (ver)maak u. (enjoy yourself, make it yourself)
    In this performance dinner, Marthe Marynissen, artist/cook of/for the pKp invites spectators to cook together and bend the rules concerning classic recipes.                   
  • Karel Thienpont – Oh mother Mary… pimp my retirement home
    Karel Thienpont collaborated with inhabitants of the residential care center ‘Huize Roborst’, contemplating their dreams for the future. “What if you win the lotto?” With the lottery numbers of the nursing home residents, he creates a live lotto draw.
  • AFA
    AFA is Italian for “too hot, stuffy”. A captivating concert with room for improvisation, by Paola Bartoletti (vocals), Dick Van Der Harst (guitar) and Giovanni Barcella (drums).

Sunday 5 September

Evening programme
4 p.m. – around 9 p.m., Vredesplein, Sint-Denijs-Boekel, including a walk of approximately 3k.
Tickets: 39 euros (day ticket included), reservation is required.

Programme: 

  • Samah Hijawi – Chasing Za’atar
    In this performance dinner, Samah Hijawi shares her reflections on the diaspora of plants and humans throughout a meal. We literally eat our way through the history of za’atar.
  • Cosco – Bee refuge
    Come and see this beehive from up close and talk to Guide De Maertelaere, beekeeper and bee ambassador of Zwalm. He’ll share his knowledge and insights concerning the importance of bees. Cosco worked closely with him on this project, with an installation extending beyond an ordinary bee housing.
  • Giovanni Barcella – Drums solo
    An improvisation by one of the best drummers at the Bocclo vineyard where Peter Baele offers a tasting of his new terroir wines.
  • Curators walk
    Samira El Khadraoui and Anyuta Wiazemsky Snauwaert, artistic directors of croxhapox, and co-curator Remi Verstraete take you on a walk of approximately 3 km.
  • Paola Bartoletti, Giovanni Barcella
    End your evening with a special concert. Giovanna Barcella once again will get behind the drums and will be accompanied by the vocals of Paola Bartoletti.

Saturday 11 September

Samah Hijawi - Chasing Za'atar
In this performance dinner, Samah Hijawi shares her reflections on the diaspora of plants and humans throughout a meal. We literally eat our way through the history of za’atar.

Performance only accessible after reservation.
1 p.m. – 2 p.m., Peace Square, Sint-Denijs-Boekel
Tickets: 20 euros, reservation is required.
Pay attention: this doesn’t include your day ticket!
With the support of Kunstenwerkplaats, A. M. Qattan Foundation, Palestine, Vlaamse Gemeenschap VGC, Vooruit and Beursschouwburg.

Community of Listeners
Community of Listeners – Blijf bij ons want het zal avond worden (Stay with us, because it will become night)
Cemetery Protestant Church of Korsele, 3.45 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Free entrance, reservation is required.
Evening programme
7 p.m. – around 10.30 p.m., Vredesplein, Sint-Denijs-Boekel, including a walk of approximately 4k.

Tickets: 39 euros (day ticket included), reservation is required.

  • Samah Hijawi – Chasing Za’atar
    In this performance dinner, Samah Hijawi shares her reflections on the diaspora of plants and humans throughout a meal. We literally eat our way through the history of za’atar.
  • Karel Thienpont – Oh mother Mary… pimp my retirement home
    Karel Thienpont collaborated with inhabitants of the residential care center ‘Huize Roborst’, contemplating their dreams for the future. “What if you win the lotto?” With the lottery numbers of the nursing home residents, he creates a live lotto draw.
  • Freek willems – This is not my cat
    Freek Willems takes you along the art route with a guided walk of approximately 4k, in which his encounters with cats from the area around Zwalm play an important role.
  • pKp – script voor Korsele
    5 writers developed a fictional character, based on their experiences with property and/or its loss. These characters are introduced during a performance in the garden, which also functions as a film set. With Wilfred De Jonge, Liesbeth Lutjeharms, Malek Al Abdulmajd and Zehra, among others.

About the artists

Bjorn Pauwels & Nora De Decker
For the second time around, Bjorn Pauwels (1993, Roeselare) and Nora De Decker (1994, Aalst) are working as a duo for a croxhapox project. Their individual practices both emerge from spatial forms, but each artist has a different point of view. Pauwels has a multidisciplinary approach, creating images that often appear as installations with a hint of humour, evoking unexpected associations. De Decker’s work mainly consists of wooden sculptures treated with oil paint. The artist combines playful elements to form different parts of one work or spatial painting.
More info at www.bjornpauwels.be and www.noradedecker.com.
Community of Listeners
Community of Listeners was founded by Helena Lemonnier (BE) and Mohsen Mahjoobi (IRN) in 2018 and is a multilingual storytelling platform. The work revolves around stories, rituals and music, brought to listeners in a unique setting. The authentic stories resonate with our hyper-diverse society, discussing not only true stories, but also myths and stories about universal subjects. Community of Listeners does not speak a unitary language, but aspires to create a common speech that questions the dominant one. After participating in a journey connecting East and West, then and now, listeners are urged to on the stories they heard to the people around them. This way, the listener becomes the narrator.
Cosco (Louis De Cordier)
Cosco [Louis De Cordier, Ostend °1978] can be best described as a modern tekton. cosco’s work depends on aspects like simplicity and integration, as a response to the complexity of daily life in the 21st century. The projects, installations, sculptures, VR’s, actions, photographs, drawings, architectural projects, movies, designs, writings and publications are part of a world-view that looks to understand the unknown. The artist strives to broaden the perceptions of the spectator, to look further than the ordinary and see the beauty of the timeless presence in which it’s embedded. To do so, cosco often takes part in interdisciplinary cooperative projects, like an archaeological labyrinth mission in Egypt, a honeybee conservancy network, or the building of a high mountain library in Spain. In 2011, Cosco relocated to the Alpujarra, to live an off-grid and more natural life and implement the vision of a sustainable social future. To walk the talk.
Daniël Dewaele
Daniël Dewaele is a self-taught artist, focusing on the relationship between art and society and the significance that art can have for society since about 1975. The artist’s action area originated in reflecting on art and the relationship or interdependence between art and economy, society, ideology… Daniël does not limit himself to questioning art alone, but also critically examines the functioning of art institutions, art as a fetish, art as a commodity and social themes such as unemployment and racism. Consistently choosing certain methods (surveys, interviews inventory…) Daniël can just as easily be called a sociological artist. The artist reacts to the traditional one-way traffic between artist and public and chooses to use the language of art, but the language of society, for instance by utilising contemporary communication methodologies.
Freek Willems
I search. By repeating the same action for a long time. By inviting people to search together while playing. Or by being very brief and impulsive. 

I search. And I forget. All the same, a little different.

Instagram: @freddykakkerlak, @this_not_mycat

Georgia Kokot
“My work has, inadvertently, been a means for self-discovery. When I properly follow my intuition—balancing it with judgment and a penchant for storytelling—the resulting artworks tend to reveal, and get me closer to, the aspects of life that make it meaningful to me. I hope very much that, by sharing them, something akin to recognition registers in the hearts of the beholders. And if by chance this helps to increase the understanding we have for our fellow humans and our sense of commonality with each other—virtues so desperately lacking in this world—then I feel that’s work well done. For Kunst & Zwalm, community and a modern-day ritual take centre-stage in a collaborative enterprise.”
Hans Beckers
I live with my ear to the ground; ‘the act of listening’ is my key to finding a deeper contact with reality. A complex network of sound constantly acts on us; outside our consciousness, the audible reality colours our actual perception. We rarely perceive frequencies and vibrations as a map of our emotional and physical state. As such, their revealing messages radiate straight into the unconscious.

A receptive way of listening sharpens our awareness and creates a higher spatial and social sensitivity to our surroundings and other beings. I believe that ‘the focused act of listening’ can bring about self-realisation and change in our lives. 

I am fascinated by the way instruments are put together as a construction of sound through material and texture. I am constantly looking for ways to change the relationship between human and instrument. In this way, unexpected everyday objects and natural materials can become musical instruments.

ieke Trinks
Having a background in visual and performing arts, ieke Trinks often works with existing objects. She looks at their relational context and re-evaluates their function and value. Using the object, the artist examines the boundaries of ownership and privacy. Exchanging experiences and involving others in her projects has become a habit. For Trinks, the repurposing or reusing of objects and materials responds to our consumption-driven society and the production processes hidden underneath it. Living and working from Rotterdam, Trinks has exhibited and performed her work in various countries in Europe, South America and North America. Trinks is part of the performance collective TRICKSTER.
Karel Thienpont
The oeuvre of Karel Thienpont consists mainly of paintings, sometimes combined in sculptural installations. Thienpont is an autodidact who developed a unique ‘anti- aesthetic’ and free visual language. Through unconstrained associations on different levels, narrative structures unfold on recycled media. The paintings refer both to art history as to the artist’s personal environment. From the most banal to traumatic or memorable events, they relate to an alienating and chaotic whole, reflecting an overwhelming reality. Karel Thienpont (1973, Ronse (Belgium)) lives in Maarkedal and works in Ronse.
OD3 Collectief
OD3 is formed by 3 ladies (Paola Bartoletti, Vigdis de Cauter, Leen de Veirman), who have been coming together for a while now to observe and discuss the different areas in which they find themselves. Through the chance encounters of people and facts, they re-map the area. They work in the field of theatre, drawing and singing. Their languages mingle and become one: making maps of the area, redrawing, rephrasing, embroidering.
Lieve D’hondt
Lieve D’hondt’s work incorporates the classic work processes of sculpture, drawing and architecture, whereby the boundaries between the various disciplines fade. The multimedia interventions and installations play with parameters such as presence/absence, time, space, codes and forms of appearance. Construction and reconstruction of structures subtly refer to the process of perception and cultural context. Recent projects focus on playing with space and interpreting its experience, meaning and content. The choice of materials and the placement of the elements in relation to each other and in the space are deliberately composed.
Museums Of Belgium
Museums of Belgium is one of the monikers under which Julie Lesenne and Matthias Nuytten work. In their work process, they enter into a relationship with an original environment, they observe and analyse how things appear there. These observations result in installations of various media that form a radical intervention in that environment.

Seemingly absurd and tactile, these temporary interventions defy preconceived ways of seeing and reveal a surprising complexity of economic, formal, historical and magical components. By choosing encounters in an everyday context, Museums of Belgium is critical of institutional mechanisms that isolate objects and the way they are used.

Their work invites the spectators to participate and further expand the collection of observations.

Nathalie Chambart
Everyday images in the form of advertising panels, neon signs, etc. are a source of inspiration for my installations and interventions. The apparent ordinariness and triviality of such material is given a prominent place in my practice. 
I want to create a reality that is recognisable to everyone and yet carries the mystery of the everyday. This intangibility is an important theme: nothing is just what it seems. It is a curiosity and melancholic desire to expose the beauty of the trivial. Hidden in plain sight. Optical illusions are there every day, we make mistakes in our observations, measurements or logic. Nevertheless, thanks to these ‘mistakes’ we come to new insights and ways of seeing. Reflections distort our reality and our view of the world. They influence our frame of reference and our position in relation to the environment and others. It is a reference to the impossibility of categorising ourselves and the world around us. After all, it can be read in an infinite number of ways and is constantly subject to change.
Rasa Alksnyte
Rasa Alksnyte is a transdisciplinary artist, photographer, teacher and mentor. Through her background in performing arts, she has an ability to take you by surprise. Her mind is filled with rarities and working practices that extends beyond expected frameworks and boxes. She often surrounds herself with energy that inspires others to play, experiment, cook and garden. By gently assisting other artists, she encourages them to face difficult questions, find  solutions and strive for a higher creative level. Rasa Alksnyte works with everything that grows and grows and grows…
Samah Hijawi
Samah Hijawi is an artist and researcher currently doing her PhD in Art Practice at ULB and the Academie Royale Des Beaux Art de Bruxelles, Belgium. In 2020 she started a long term project Kitchen. Table. that researches the movement of food practices over time and across geographies, and the body as a site of food memory. Her earlier work focused on unpacking the political gesture in artistic works that allude to the histories of Palestine, a research that manifested in a series of collages and lecture performances from 2017-2019. The essence of the question of where the political is embedded in artistic work, continues in the on-going series Aesthetics of the Political, a project that involves creating artist to artist encounters to explore how political ideas are transformed to artistic form.
Together with Shuruq Harb and Toleen Touq she co-curated the platform The River has Two Banks (2012-2017), initiated to address the growing distance between Jordan and Palestine.
Stefanie Claes
Stefanie Claes has a background in both visual arts and theater. She mainly focuses on making her own (visual) projects. She won the KBC TAZ prize with her thesis ‘Het Feest Van De platte Cake’ and the performance ‘The Fantastic Life of Saint Christopher as summarized in twelve scenes and three songs’ was awarded in 2012 for Circuit X and The Theater Festival and received the Roel Verniers Prize. Stefanie is a member of the collective Lucinda Ra (The Fioretti Project, Akaaremoertoe Bahikoeroe, GRONDWERK) and, like her co-creators at Lucinda Ra, she likes to be inspired by unique and invisible places and people. She is currently touring with Mia Kermis, a visual performance about a foundling. In addition to theater work, she also creates visual work, such as drawings and figures.
Taart in de brievenbus
In recent years, the artist collective ‘Taart in de brievenbus’ has brought artistic interventions into the domestic context. Over the period of a month, an inhabited house functioned simultaneously as an exhibition, private and public space.
With the invitation to Kunst en Zwalm and covid being invisibly very tangible, the collective focused on the space around inhabited houses: the garden with its compost heap. Through these compost heaps, they observe the rhythms of the everyday.
Willem Vermeersch
In between hops – around 70 years after the battle – Willem Vermeersch was born out of another person with the help of another person, actually with the help of everyone somehow related to one another: in other words everyone and everything. Can You be more specific? No. Maybe. A warm Malaysian host family. A journey on foot, and then again – just like drawing is breathing – looking for spaces facilitating dialogue. Primal screams. Kneaded by compressing microcosmosses in Brussels and elsewhere. On top of that, the persons mentioned before particularly helped me find the road(signs): Thank You for existing!
pKp (para instituut voor KUNST en precariteit)
The pKp is a collective art practice with a changing cast and educational approach, set up within Stijn Van Dorpe’s doctoral research at LUCA School of Arts. For Kunst & Zwalm the pKp consists, besides Stijn Van Dorpe, of Elien Ronse, Nancy Vansieleghem, Does Vandousselaere, Marthe Marynissen, Bas Schevers, Emma Boeyaert, Joan Somers Donnelly, Floor Van Hoof, Mona Schietekat, Luth Lea Roose, Elena Vloeberghen, Sarah Késenne, Georgia Kokot. LUCA School of Arts is a partner in this project.

The pKp creates space from which it takes para positions: next to, within, during or in opposition to existing practices and institutions. Circulating dynamics are examined, reinforced or counteracted. Vulnerability and uncertainty are thereby considered important. What relationships are established with one’s own precariousness and that of others? Can giving meaning to precarity in a different way initiate a resistance to the prevailing order? The condition of mutual dependence is a guiding principle, contrary to the ideology of our late-capitalist world.