BIG small talk* by fariba mosleh

I love Small Talks at Beursschouwburg! These are not academic lectures, but more of kind of spontaneous talk of experts on certain topic, but still are intense and good in respect of content. It’s an accessible format at eye level in the Beurscafé and with such a concentrated and often critical audience it can end up in constructive reflective dialogues. Yesterday so with the invited guest Malika Hamidi, intellectual, activist and expert in islamic feminism, on the topic of Spirituality and activism, hosted by Atefeh Sadeghi.


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Submission submission by fariba mosleh

Premiere at Beursschouwbourg yesterday within Performatik19!
I've already heard a few things about the performance artist Bryna Fritz, originally from Chicago now based in Belgium, and I was really curious about this young women trained at P.A.R.T.S as a dancer. What is her approach to contemporary performance art?
The premiere of the 40 minutes stage piece Submission submission was everything but disappointing. She does a portrayal of the four ancient roman and medieval female saints Christina of Bolsena, Hildegard of Bingen, Christina the Astonishing and Joan of Arc bridging them with 21st century's IT.
This she did in such a cool and accessable way. Using our everyday's working tool - the laptop desktop screen as the whole stage design and the element of performance itself. Besides the good sound, some text reading and a short tongue-body movement, which referred to Christina of Bolsena's torture through tearing out her tongue, the projection of her desktop screen and the graphical movements of the elements like letters or desktop folders with its titles has been choreographed.  
Fritz tremendously emancipated herself from the background as a dancer even though the short element of tongue-performance where one could see that she actually knows how move every element of her body in order to express precice messages.
With this kind of digital poetry and choreography reflecting the life and thoughts of important (western) figures of history Bryana Fritz creates a unique performative form of dialogue with the audience.
Want to see more of her works***

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the schnormal way* by fariba mosleh

Friday Night with babysitter means that we start the evening with the double opening of the exhibitions of US artist Ellen Gallagher and Belgian artist Benoît Platéus. Under the title Liquid Intelligence Gallagher, who’s partly living in Rotterdam, presents her wide spanning painterly œvre as well as works she developed together with cineaste Edgar Cleijne. I very much appreciate the diverse materials and her special use of those. In the upper floor one can find the audio-visual installation Osedax from 2010 with a fantastic soundtrack Message From a Black Man by the ’70s soul group the Whatnauts.

Under the title One Inch Off Platéus presents a far-reaching body of works as well, whereas for me his photographic gaze is the most interesting one.

Always a bit oscillating between the visual and the performing arts, as I am, we left WIELS for the opening at Beursschouwburg of the NORMAL SCHNORMAL Festival. The months February, March and April they opening up their house with its diverse spaces (Stages, Black Box, Exhibition space, Café, etc.) for A multidisciplinary programme on normality and other deviations inviting a countless number of (inter)national artists sharing their artistic practice on this discourse …

What is normal?
Am I normal?
Do you think X, Y, and Z are normal?

We had the opportunity to see the artist Ntando Cele’s piece Black Off , a performance in three parts, first white-facing in the role of a stand-up comedian, then becoming very intimate and personal with her “natural” appearance uncovering her face from the white mask in several monologues, ending in a punk-rock concert … all offering a personal perspective on racism and socio-political topic, supported by live sound of a trio around the musician Simon Ho. I like Cele’s humorous as well as very serious approach a lot, but still I believe that the whole performance, taking 2 hours, lost a bit of its power by not stopping at the right, earlier, moment.

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Beurs' BIG Conversation* by fariba mosleh

And it was REALLY big - a lot bigger than I was prepared for - fantastic*
Last Saturday THE BIG CONVERSATION on Safety and Freedom took place in Beursschouwbourg, organized in cooperation with Goethe Institut and Panoptykon Foundation. It was such an inspiring, in-depth and highly professional organized event, which gave the participants a lot of strength and new ideas for their diverse practices … 12 very diverse experts and protagonists from a multitude of disciplines of topics of interests were present to share their expertise in conversation groups of up to 15 persons. The participants had the chance to choose one out of 8 conversation tables and to attend 3 of such session á 50 minutes. There were artistic interventions during the evening and a lot of space for discourse …
Globe Aroma, an open house for art and people was invited for such an artistic intervention, reading out poems on the human rights declaration in the White Cube of Beurs. A super project*

I attended the conversations of Dietmar Kammerer about surveillance, Eva de Beardemaeker about (un)safe & playful environments and with Kritikos Pandelis Mwansa about ethnic profiling. Each of them so different and unique. This format of gathering, input, dialogue and exchange is fantastic and I am sure some sustainable alliances have been developed that night.
I personally would like to get to know far more about Eva de Beardemaeker’s project CULTUREGHEM, a community engaged experimental organisation in a huge market hall in Anderlecht … let’s check that out!

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really? by fariba mosleh

I don’t want to sound like a fine art spectator entering contemporary exhibitions stating “what’s that? art? everybody can do that.”, and the like … BUT as a person who is following artistic practises, in all kinds of forms and around the world, for more than a decade, sometimes it is actually hard to keep calm and not freaking out when entering a high-end top gallery in Brussels seeing the solo show of a under 30 year old artists presenting, in this case, about 10 monochromatic large scale paintings in this great rooms. I enter - quite open-minded - and can’t other than ask myself really ??
Yes, of course I can find links to art history, to contemporary approaches, I can define it as daring and provocative, reflect upon technical experiments of the artist, I can talk to the art crowd which came for the opening and find interesting relations … yes, it makes one talk about it, and that’s maybe more moving than some other boring exhibitions which try to do something new or trendy. But woMan - we are talking about art pieces of young guys which are on the market for (ten)thousands of Euros, taking the spaces for works which are so much more interesting and contemporary.

But he might have achieved his aim making me feel weird and annoyed … and the dialogue with other artists whom I respect a lot makes me calm down a bit after seeing such presentations. They are not angry about such developments, they are more concerned about the pulverisation and exploitation of young artists. One artists points out the short-living of such practises of young artists, he asked me ,what do you think he gonna do in ten years?`…

(c) Carmen Subota

Yet, such an evening is completely saved if it ends with two very close friends and a lot of fun at a concert at Beursschouwburg - British-Nigerian producer Tony Njoku and before the Bombataz from Brussels … even though this could end up in another discussion about really?

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Can´t pronounce that institution's name ... by fariba mosleh

… last Thursday I stopped by at the famous Beursschouwburg - for a newcomer in town an extremely active, vivid multi-disciplinary event hub with tradition - to see the opening of Margarita Maximova exhibition You’re on your own and all over the place … it was surprisingly cool! Have a look on the pics …

… the video-sound installation was presented in a way open to the street what a I liked a lot. For the opening eve with an opened glass front that the audience was inside and outside of the display. More than inviting to dive deeper into the screened topic …

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