Reflection on The Island Indoors

28 Nov

11wIn the last days of the exhibition I would like to leave a short reflection as a curator on collaboration and on the influence of a room on the final result. When Stefan and I started to develop the idea we had that particular space in mind as well as a selection of the current showcased works of art and hoped they would work together and create an interesting atmosphere together.  The storyline we had in our head was vague, but pointing in a certain direction: a showcase of high level Maltese art in a Flemish ‘palazzo’-like setting in a year where Valletta would be one of the Cultural Capitals of Europe.  We were able to convince the director of the space as well as the artists of our idea. What followed was a co-creation process between artists and curators. The title of the exhibition, the final storyline and the adaptation of the works to that context all happend in collaboration.

Very exciting and mesmerising was the moment when it all came together in the beautiful baroque room of  Hof De Bist. All works of art and the room seemed to give each other extra strength and lifted each other up. The total design fell into place and created something new. We wanted to create an experience, and I believe we succeeded but this was only possible thanks to the nice way we all worked together artists, curators and the team of the cultural centre in Ekeren.

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The Island Indoors is a collaboration with 252 CC Cultuurcentrum Ekeren, supported by Arts Council Malta through the Cultural Export Fund and the Local Art Fund Ekeren/Antwerp, endorsed by Valletta 2018 Cultural Capital of Europe.

Participating artists and works: Aaron Bezzina – Position of Opposition, Matthew Attard – Maijalata, Caesar Attard – In Memory of our Luminaries,  Marc Thiron &Stefan Kolgen – Red Diffused and Ryan Falzon – a selection of Quick Fix – A Morality Tale.

Exhibition still on till 30/11 – 14:00 – 17:00 – 252 cc – Hof De Bist – Veltwijcklaan 252 – Ekeren

Reflections on being a higher arts education educator today

17 Nov

51lqjn0vjVL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_This week the book The Leader Reader – Narratives of Experience arrived in Malta. It brings together more then 100 essays/reflections of educators around the world. What reads through all narratives if each writer’s passion for teaching. We were asked for a very personal view on our Leadership moment in lecturing/teaching … From that came my reflection on my experience as a lecturer in arts education. The challenges, but also the strengths the arts have in relation to other disciplines in education and in society.

You can find my essay here.

Curious to read other experiences? You can order the book here.

 

Thank you John for introducing me to the editors.

 

Exchange in Time and The Island Indoors on Kultura News

5 Sep

Kultura News made a short item on last weeks exchange in Valletta and in introduction to the exhibition that will take place in Ekeren in November.

If you are around, come and join us. The exhibition opens 9 November and runs till 30 November. We have a discussion and meet & greet planned on the 10th. So plenty of time to meet the artists then.

Exchange in Time as part The Island Indoors – notes and outcomes

2 Sep

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A 2-day intensive discussion on art and art education on 27-28 August 2018, hosted by the School of Art in Valletta. Exchange between Flanders and Malta as part of the exhibition project ‘The Island Indoors” (supported by Arts Council Malta through the Cultural Export Fund and 252cc, and endorsed by Valletta 2018). Bringing together 2 art teachers and their (ex)-students.

The notes and outcomes can be found here. Some of the topics will be further developed at the Meet and Greet session on the 10th of November in Ekeren … and hopefully also later on in Malta 😉

The Island Indoors

23 May

 

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Pleased to announce that the exhibition project curated by Stefan Kolgen and myself the support of Arts Council Malta through the Cultural Export Fund and got endorsed by Valletta 2018. The project has been developed in partnership with 252 CC (the cultural centre of Ekeren) and evolves in close collaboration with the participating artists: Caesar Attard, Matthew Attard, Aaron Bezzina, Ryan Falzon and Marc Thiron. Theatre wizzard Martin Baarda will help us with the installation of the exhibition in Hof De Bist.

The concept is based on a room in a castle/palazzo. Sunday roast is served. A typical Maltese dish is prepared. At first sight it looks like a normal dining room with images on the wall, a big chandelier and a couple dining. But when you look closer you will notice that nothing is what it seems. The couple at the table is only there in our perception and makes you wonder what they are talking about, while a peculiar soundscape accompanies their discussion.The longer we absorb the scene the more it becomes clear that this is not just a dining room, but an installation that tells a story. The objects present challenge us in our perception and open a critical dialogue with us the viewer. From that new thoughts, ideas might appear. Nothing is as it seems to be …

The exhibition runs from 10 to 30 November. Opening night 9 November. Discussion and meet & greet with the artists, 10 November afternoon (14:30-17:00).

The Island Indoors: in collaboration with 252CC – Cultural Centre Ekeren/Antwerp and Malta School of Art, supported by Arts Council Malta, endorsed by Valletta2018.

25 years later

14 Jan

No New Year’s Resolution. Just a short reflection.

Recently I came across the poster promoting Antwerp 93. The tagline for the year questioned whether art can safe the world. Well it might not be able to safe the world, but it does make the world a better place. Over the past years I learned that one can make small differences through art and culture, so yes we can never have enough of it.

Honestly, it was not a coincidence bumping into that poster. Next week Valletta 2018 European Cultural Capital will kick off and exactly 25 years ago I had the pleasure to be part of Antwerp 1993 European Capital of Culture. Back then I just graduated and was one of the guides leading guests and visitors through the city and through all exhibitions related to the cultural capital year. It was an amazing year for a fresh graduate, as I had the opportunity to discover Antwerp’s cultural institutions on all levels. It was also the start of an art-full career. Since then I can be only grateful for what happened on my professional path.

When I left Belgium in 2015 I could not have imagined that I would again be working on an international inspiring level connecting with artist worldwide, since apart from other things, I’m again involved in a European Cultural Capital adventure. I’m honoured to be able to develop together with fantastic colleagues an artist in residence programme for Valletta 2018 that wanders towards expected and unexpected paths, connecting all art forms, science, education and health. The journey started two years ago and I hope it will leave something sustainable after the 2018.

Ready to roll and continue the story.

I wish you all an inspiring 2018 !!!

 

Open Call Artist Residency at Esplora

30 Dec

Curious to know who will be the artist residing at the new science centre here in Malta. The Valletta 2018 Foundation together with Esplora Interactive Science Centre and the Malta Council for Science and Technology set up a residency programme for 2018 and invites artists to apply for an immersive Artist-in-Residence (AiR) experience.

This residency seeks to bring arts and science closer together through the art of storytelling and encourages productive interaction between international creatives and local creatives; between international creatives and communities, as well as, physical and virtual environments.

The Residency will be held at Esplora Interactive Science Centre, Triq il-Marina, Kalkara, Malta between April 2018 and May 2018 and will run for 6 weeks.

More information on the residency and the link to the application form can be found on the Esplora website. The call is open till the end of January.