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WGDD

05/06/2015 – 05/07/2015

Participating artist(s) Vasily Bogatov, Daan Gielis, Taisiya Krugovykh, Karl Philips, Tom Vanuytrecht

Can fringes still exist within the art world? Or does the art market immediately assimilate each and every marginal, outlandish or obscure artistic invention that takes place in the art world?

Think of the art world as a festival site: can anything unexpected and spontaneous take place within the tightly controlled perimeters of such a festival site?

According to WGDD, the answer is yes!

The exhibition provokes the visitors to reflect on the questions above and to discover whether they agree. The artists create a temporary environment that alludes (and at times literally reproduces) the temporary architecture of the festival site. WGDD examines its transient and spontaneous eruption of joy and commonality, but also its deeply dystopian nature, it’s wasteland-like qualities and possibilities.

WGDD (Wiegedood) presents the work of three young Belgian artists, Daan Gielis (1989), Karl Philips (1984) and Tom Vanuytrecht (1982), who came of age at the fringes of the art world. Juxtaposed to their works WGDD shows the documentary Pussy versus Putin (2012), made by Vasily Bogatov (1984) and Taisiya Krugovykh (1982), two Russian documentary makers employing their own strategies within the fringes of art and political activism. Bogatov and Krugovykh’s work shows how the merger between art and activism in the new repressive capitalism of Putin’s Russia creates alternative pockets of resistance.

The wasteland in which art becomes possible once more is not Limburg, it’s certainly not surrealist Belgium, and it’s not even the repressive capitalism of Putin’s Russia. It is, rather, the art world itself, which produces its own wasteland. These are the unexpected excrescences of global capitalism and the strictures the art market imposes on young artists and art consumers.

The exhibition opens on June 5th with a performance by the Belgian black metal band Wiegedood. Performing a genre that still sits uneasy with the musical mainstream, Wiegedood stubbornly perform their black metal in Dutch.

Program

  • Friday 5th of June, 2015, 19:00 – 23:00: Opening. Concert by Wiegedood, 20:00
  • Thursday 11th of June, 19:00 – 23:00: Putin will teach you how to love your motherland. Talk & Thoughts with exhibition initiator Karl Philips and documentary-makers Vasily Bogatov and Taisiya Krugovykh in response to their documentary Pussy versus Putin (2013) that is part of the current exhibition WGDD. We will go in depth into their documentaries, their motives and the heavy consequences they experience because of the work that they are making while living in Russia. Artist/activist Bart Stuart will moderate the conversation and open up the dialogue about the blurred lines between documentary making, media, activism and politics.
  • Thursday 18th of June, 19:00 – 23:00: Screening of the documentary THE SOUND OF BELGIUM (2012) by Jozef Devillé. The Sound of Belgium elaborates how a small country in the heart of Europe invented a unique sound and placed itself on the map. It goes in search of the spirit of a nation, by exploring the history of Belgian’s popular music and the people that danced to it.
  • Wednesday 1st of July, 19:00 – 23:00: A debate in context of the exhibition. Artist and WGDD initiator Karl Philips will give a short introduction, in which he will talk about his Luna park ‘Jacky Sport’, which he uses as a studio and a platform for his work. The former location of the Luna park has been disbanded, therefore he now has to look for a new place. This urgent situation is the immediate cause for a debate about the possibilities of living and working in the fringe. History has taught us that the friction between society and art has always been a breeding ground and motivation for the arts. But does the city still offer this friction to the artist? When the entire city is taken over by Starbucks, Zara and H&M, what is left for the ‘outcast’ artist? The market system is so interconnected with the art world that every artistic intervention is in danger of extinction. For example, MTV and Redbull are located at the NDSM area, while cultural initiatives like ADM are threatened to be shut down. Can fringes still exist within the art world? Or should we prepare ourselves for the exodus of the arts to the periphery, the deserted industrial areas of Genk and North Rhine-Westphalia? Bart Stuart, artist and activist, co-founder of Buro Spelen, will open and moderate the debate.

Links:

Gonzo circus

The Sound of Belgium

The Sound of Belgium (Facebook)

Huffington Post