Open Design Course for Refugees and Asylum Seekers
Opening: Friday 23 November 2018 - 15:00
Open Design Course for Refugees and Asylum Seekers
Mirra Markhaeva, Ayman Nasser, Kinda Ghannoum, Reza Panahi, Kelechi Johnbosco Ahunanya, Dessalegn Yared Yilma, Mohammed Tawfiq, Seyed, Mohamad Bayan Jilo, Marcus Bergner, Fatma Osman, Asaad Merza, Mohamed Rida Mahir, Elli Vassalou, Liselotte Van Daele, Elias Heuninck, Wendy van Wynsberghe, Sawsan Maher, Samer Alagha, Jerry Galle, Hala Elias Poles, Jozefien Mombaerts, Hendrik Leper en Wim Waelput.
Kunstensite vzw (KIOSK) and School of Arts Ghent offered a course in Open Design for asylum seekers and refugees currently staying in Belgium. The course program focused on Open Design approaches in media-, product- and systems design. The course method is based on co-creation and peer learning, and puts an emphasis on technological literacy and new media literacy.
Every student developed his own work during the course and we would love to share with you their work in progress, thoughts and struggles.
The students will be there to explain and discuss their work and process. We would love to welcome you with a drink.
The exhibition will be open until 6pm and on 24 and 25 November from 10pm until 6pm.
Daniel García Andújar
Opening: Friday 21 September 2018 - 19:00
Daniel García Andújar (1966, Spain) is a central figure in the Spanish internet art scene. Since the late 80s he has been starting up internet projects, he is a founding member of the irational.org web collective, and developed Technologies To The People® (TTTP), a non-profit organization that provides people who lack the means with access to new technologies. These collectives hack and appropriate material from contemporary culture with the aim of revealing the often problematic politics or absurd logic of the internet. With open source and collective methods of production, they undermine the notion of material or intellectual property, or the newly acquired power of digital technology.
In a next phase, Andújar looks for ways to take these issues from their virtual server environments and translate them to posters, slideshows, sculptures, publications or interventions in public space. For his solo show at KIOSK, titled Plus ultra, he will bring several stories together in one of these multi-media installations. One topic he focuses on is a bit of shared history: Emperor Charles V, born in Ghent in 1500 and crowned King of Spain at age sixteen. It was Charles V who gave Spain its motto Plus ultra (Latin for ‘further beyond’). Andújar follows the emperor’s lead to historical moments of public display of power in Ghent, to frame these from his own perspective.
With the support of the Spanish Embassy in Belgium.
Opening: Saturday 21 April 2018 - 20:00
Falling, lovely and beautiful
Falling, lovely and beautiful is a new set of works by the French-Morrocan artist Latifa Echakhch (1974, living in Martigny, Switzerland) presented in KIOSK. An installation involving bronze bells, a performative video and a series of drawings in ink. For these works, the objects or texts have been stripped of their original meanings and contexts in order to make new interpretations possible. This method is typical for Echakhch's art practice. Driven by the necessity to counter certain prejudices, contradictions and stereotypes in our society, she isolates and questions materials that are symbolic for these phenomena. By giving them a new setting or a different space, new meanings or unexpected characteristics may arise.
Eckakhch appropriates, dismantles and re-represents daily materials and simple objects. Personal memories as well as shared history and cultural heritage like literature, philosophy and music serve as her sources. Her practice repeatedly questions preset notions about identity, nationality, religion and authenticity. She also examines her own fragmented, symbolically charged culture, using a language that is at the same time sensitive and powerful. Politics and poetry come together in installations and environments built up out of personal, historical and cultural references.
All this applies to the exposition Falling, lovely and beautiful as well, with the title freely referring to the Nick Cave song As I sat sadly by her side.
The monumental shattered bronze bells under the central dome, are exact replicas of the church bells from the destroyed church Lübeck, a German city bombed in 1942. While the church is now fully restored, the bells are left lying exactly where they hit the ground at the time.
While the pieces of fallen bells emphasise silence in terms of stilled notes or muted violence, in the side room piano notes resound amidst huge noise. For this video, Echakhch simultaneously evokes an act of creation and destruction by making someone play the piano while, at the same time, someone else splits the instrument to pieces with a sledgehammer.
In a similar way, Echakhch's series of ink drawings deconstructs Arabic poetry. On sheets of newspaper she ‘transcribed’ the original texts, but only copying the punctuation or vowels. Traditionally and linguistically though in Arabic poetry, exactly these 'auxiliary signs' essentially define the meaning for the whole sentence or the poem. Here, the sheets of newspaper are largely left blank, the signs as mere unreadable connotations. The text, in other words, becomes an abstract drawing, bearing within it the possibility of a whole new reading.
The exhibition is realized with the support of the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia.
Opening: Friday 16 February 2018 - 20:00
Film maker and installation artist Nida Sinnokrot (1971, USA) presents a series of sculptural and cinematic installations in the KIOSK rooms. Some of the works on display are new, others were reinterpreted for this particular context, but all of them speak of the history, representation or political potential of ‘machines’, like photographic or cinematographic devices. Brought together in a single exhibition space under the title Exquisite Rotation, they will combine into a new, synchronized gesture.
The works in the show shed light on a different way of looking in which the linear time and fixed perspective that we associate with the traditional big screen, the photographic lens or the projection screen are disrupted. Sinnokrot aims to transcend the mechanisms of mass media such as photography and film, countering them with an array of new, critical narrative strategies. One of these is his recurrent attempt to capture several layers of implicit meaning in a single powerful, abstract image or poetic experience.
His camera functions as a tool to speak about his native country, displacement and the relation between technology and colonialism. In this sense, his desire to liberate the cinematic machine as we know it, is also an expression of his own hybrid identity. Sinnokrot is currently based in Jerusalem but, as the son of Palestinian parents, he spent his childhood in Algeria and moved to the United States as a teenager.
The exhibition is focused around a central installation in the dome room where moving images are projected horizontally instead of vertically, and the projection speed is determined by the interaction with the viewers. With each step, the film registers scratches, starting an irreversible process of deterioration. Sinnokrot describes this ‘horizontal cinema’ as a tool to address the material reality of violence and its mediation, manipulation and circulation: “This violence is reflected in the machine itself and the relationship between trauma and perception is materialized in its clash of technologies and systems. It’s cinema and war. It’s the experience of dispossessed and displaced peoples.”
The exhibition is organized within the framework of Under Construction Festival in Ghent and Ramallah.
Opening: Friday 1 December 2017 - 20:00
Fragments, Particles and the Mechanisms of Growth
Nazgol Ansarinia presents the exhibition Fragments, Particles and the Mechanisms of Growth at KIOSK. Through drawings, collages, sculptures, murals and works in textile, Iranian artist Nazgol Ansarinia draws a portrait of everyday life in her native city of Tehran, and of her own position within that context. She grows along with a city that now counts almost 14 million residents and whose face is rapidly changing. As capitalism’s sway over contemporary Iranian society grows ever more pervasive, there is housing shortage, the real estate market booms, houses make way for towering new apartment buildings and shopping malls, which results in a vicious paradoxical cycle of construction and deconstruction.
Each individual is a link in this process of ‘growth’ and is, like the city itself, subject to certain underlying codes and dynamics. It is the tension between her personal experience and public, regulated life in Tehran that always surfaces in Ansarinia’s work: “I have so many layers of memory from each corner of this city. Every part of this city is associated with memories from different stages in my life. I think that’s what makes this fast speed of construction so destructive in a way. It’s taking away our collective memory and individual memory with it. Neighbourhoods are changing so fast that they are unrecognizable. You feel lost when you can’t relate to a space.” (from “The Artist and their City”, The Guardian / Tate, 2016).
The artist turns a social system, an urban development or set of rules inside-out, dissects and interrogates them in order to reveal a collective consciousness or feeling in their reconstruction. In her exhibition at KIOSK, for instance, she films and analyses the demolition of a building in Tehran and incorporates the ‘traces’ of the process as video and sculpture. The video work Fragment 1, Demolishing buildings, buying waste registers how the building was torn down with shovel and pickaxe in 16 days. It is an attempt to capture the moment in between demolition and creation, and it illustrates the notion that for each new building there is an equal amount of material that is being shoved aside.
The rubble that is carried away in the video is symbolically reinstated as a new building brick at KIOSK. The rubble is laid open, sorted and reconstructed into new plaster and ceramic sculptures. Alongside these, the artist also presents a series of collages in which she weaves together articles on politics or economics from different Iranian newspapers into mosaics. The connecting thread that runs through all works in the show can be summed up with Ansarinia’s underlying thought that “I’m a deconstructionist who reconstructs the torn apart elements that show something new about something so banal that has gone unnoticed, so repetitive that it became part of routine life.” This is her way to get a handle on the innumerable mechanisms of growth that currently define this city, and to give them form.
Opening: Friday 22 September 2017 - 20:00
C O CO
Austrian artist Christoph Meier (1980, based in Vienna) conceived his show C O CO as a search for potential forms of interplay between his work, the visitor, and the KIOSK exhibition spaces. Inspired by the particular architecture and history of the location, Meier presents new architectural and social spaces based on a bamboo grid structure, new and existing sculptures and a video piece.
The exhibition is a further step in the collaboration between the artist and three institutions; C O CO was developed from C & O, the show Meier presented at Kunstverein Hamburg last year, and will in turn become the blueprint for another exhibition at Casino Luxembourg next year. For each successive location, the specific space is the basis on which new byroads temporarily cross.
Meier’s practice investigates the exhibition context as a space for social interaction, and the way in which it produces and presents contemporary art. He searches for intermediate forms that accentuate the space but also, simultaneously, question it. This often results in invasive or absurdist interventions that create a tension between the existing institutional space and the architectural and/or sculptural work that the artist confronts it with.
Against the dominant central dome room of KIOSK – a former anatomical auditorium – Meier positions a seemingly light, primitive structure that cannot be surveyed in a single glance and that is every bit as peculiar and theatrical as the surrounding architecture. Bamboo sticks ostentatiously take over the space. Sticking to a rigorously fixed modular structure, they uncompromisingly and repetitively penetrate the architecture – regardless of brick or glass. Interior and exterior become interconnected. The grid imposed upon the existing space restricts the visitor’s movements but it also expands the field of vision. It adds a new frame within which we can project an infinite number of imaginary spaces.
The sculptures surrounding the bamboo piece are made of found or repurposed materials that carry associations mainly of craft, industry and technology. The container-shapes of folded or perforated metal sheets waver between open and closed, unique and serial, distant and immersive, functional and dysfunctional, minimalist and complex. This game of opposites, repetition, performance and deconstruction keeps the objects in constant motion, refusing univocal interpretations. Meier hopes to see his ‘social forms’ uncouple from what they are to go on a search, together with the visitor, for what they might be. This makes them into a stage, a plinth or table; that is, carriers of meaning open to dialogue.
On the occasion of the exhibition, a monograph, a co-production with Kunstverein Hamburg and Casino Luxembourg, is published by Mousse Publishing. This publication will be presented at KIOSK, Thursday, October 12th.
The exhibition is realized in collaboration with Kunstverein Hamburg & Casino Luxembourgh - Forum d’art contemporain. With the support of Bundeskanzleramt Österreich. I
Show Me Your Archive and I Will Tell You Who is in Power
Opening: Friday 28 April 2017 - 20:00
Show Me Your Archive and I Will Tell You Who is in Power combines an exhibition with a public program of lectures, panel discussions, performances and screenings to present stories from the history of feminist struggle. Issues of race, gender and class are covered from a so-called intersectional perspective, an approach that works to bring to the fore the combinations of discriminatory practices and the dynamics they engender. The project’s title refers to the 2009 lecture of the same name by Gloria Wekker, renowned Surinamese-Dutch scholar with an established reputation within the transnational and Black European feminist discourse.
Show Me Your Archive and I Will Tell You Who is in Power wishes to extend its scope beyond Western, white feminism and to trace the beginnings of a transnational and intersectional perspective in Belgian feminism and beyond. The project’s starting point was the Ghent Royal Academy of Fine Arts and its first (and thus far sole) female head Chantal De Smet, who held the position from 1989 to 1996. In the early 1970s, De Smet was a central character in the Ghent Dolle Minas, one of the first initiatives of the second feminist wave in Flanders. She was also one of the driving forces behind the Belgian Angela Davis Committee.
It was the second feminist wave that pushed the United Nations to taking measures to improve the position of women, resulting in the UN declaring the period 1976-1985 the decade of the woman and the organisation of women’s conferences in Mexico City (1975), Copenhagen (1980) and Nairobi (1985). FORUM ’85, the alternative conference of women’s movements and non-governmental organizations taking place alongside the official UN conference in Nairobi was a key moment in the history of transnational feminism. Attended by 14,000 women, activists and feminists from mainly non-Western countries, it was the first occasion of that scale to stage worldwide encounters and exchanges of ideas.
Documents from public archives that provide insight in these historical and local contexts make up the backbone of the exhibition. In addition, visual artists Marwa Arsanios, Saddie Choua, Amandine Gay, Kapwani Kiwanga, Ato Malinda, Eva Olthof and collective Study Group for Solidarity and TransActions were invited to make new work, connecting with these archives and themes and approach them from a postcolonial, transnational or politically emancipatory context. They offer new critical perspectives on history and in turn help to shape the guise of another new wave of feminism.
The public program wishes to think about how feminism can radically rethink notions such as class, gender and race from a postcolonial perspective. The program starts with a screening of Françoise Dasques’ film La conférence des femmes – Naïrobi (1985) about FORUM ’85, followed by a conversation between Paola Bacchetta (professor of Gender and Women’s Studies, University of California, Berkeley) and French political scientist Françoise Vergès.
Show Me Your Archive and I Will Tell You Who is in Power is organized by KIOSK and KASK / School of Arts Ghent in the context of The Uses of Art – The Legacy of 1848 and 1989, a project initiated by the museum confederation L’Internationale with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union. The project is curated by Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez, Wim Waelput and assistant curator Rachelle Dufour.
In cooperation with Amsab-
ISG, AVG-Carhif and Sophia asbl/vzw.
Opening: Friday 10 February 2017 - 20:00
De Indiase kunstenaar Shilpa Gupta presenteert de solotentoonstelling Drawing in the Dark. De titel refereert aan de clandestiene bewegingen en praktijken in grensgebieden en aan de metafoor van de grens of lijn die meerdere hier tentoongestelde werken met elkaar verbindt. De tentoonstelling maakt deel uit van Gupta’s doorlopend onderzoek naar interrelaties tussen structuren, meer specifiek die van de staat en het individu, en hoe die herschaald worden op die plaatsen die zowel scheiding als periferie vormen. Verderbouwend op zes jaar onderzoek, voornamelijk in de grensgebieden van India en Bangladesh, vormt deze nieuwe reeks werken een uitbreiding van het My East is Your West-project dat Gupta in 2015 voor de Biënnale van Venetië ontwikkelde. In het najaar van 2016 reisde ze terug naar gebieden nabij de grensomheining waarmee India buurland Bangladesh omsingelt, de beruchte langste scheidingsbarrière in opbouw tussen twee natiestaten ter wereld. Volgens de kunstenaar staat het dagelijkse leven in die gebieden haaks op de overheidsintenties, en de stroom van mensen en goederen gaat voort, gedreven door historische en sociale affiniteiten, geografische continuïteit en economische nood.
De centraal opgestelde sculptuur 24:00:01 (flapbord, 2010-2012) wordt omringd door nieuwe werken die samen kunnen worden gezien als een bundeling van clandestiene verhalen. Sculpturen, tekeningen en foto’s schetsen samen een beeld van de subversieve, illegale en informele stroom van goederen, mensen en verlangens. Zo zijn het object omwonden met de rafels van een traditionele Dhakai Jamdani sari, de serie marihuana-tekeningen en de fotocollages met auto-onderdelen één voor één dragers van verhalen over ongeregistreerde reizen langs meanderende lijnen op de kaart.
Eerder dan een esthetische passieve beleving, probeert Gupta’s werk vragen uit te lokken bij de kijker. Ze start een dialoog op over de perceptie en de constructie van identiteit, alsook over thema’s die deze beïnvloeden zoals nationaliteit, technologie, religie, grenzen, conflicten, controle of censuur: “Ik ben geïnteresseerd in perceptie, en dus ook in hoe definities worden opgerokken of doorbroken – zij het door gender, geloof, of het concept van de natie. Er gaapt een kloof tussen de grotere constructie die een uniciteit voor zichzelf zoekt, en het fragment daarvan dat misschien iets helemaal anders betracht. En schijnbaar logische handelingen als aftekenen en meten, zijn mogelijks niet de weg naar oplossingen” (Shilpa Gupta in Indian Express, 2016).
In de grensgebieden die Gupta oproept in Drawing in the Dark tonen onze schijnbaar vaste wetten zich nog in constante beweging en voor discussie vatbaar. Het randgebied wordt getoond als een niemandsland waarbinnen zich praktijken en verhalen ‘in het donker’ ontwikkelen of als een parallel circuit van goederen dat ‘onzichtbaar’ onder het oog van de overheid opereert. De ‘wet’ van iedere identiteit wordt hier vervangen door een set voorwaardelijke regels waardoor er opnieuw speel- en denkruimte vrijkomt om onszelf in vraag te stellen.
De tentoonstelling is een coproductie van KIOSK, Bielefelder Kunstverein en Le centre d’art contemporain – la synagogue de Delme.
Opening: Friday 2 December 2016 - 20:00
Lineage of Love
KIOSK presents Lineage of Love, the first Belgian solo exhibition by Dorothy Iannone (°1933, Boston, USA). A self-taught artist focusing on issues of emancipation, sexuality, politics and spiritual awakening, Iannone has been developing a singular body of work for over half a century. From 1967 she lived with Swiss-German artist Dieter Roth for a number of years, starting a thorough intertwining of her personal (and amorous) life with her artistic work. This emphatic autobiographical and narrative aspect of her work is expressed in paintings, drawings, graphic novels, sculptures, artist’s books, text-based works, collages and photographic works.
The great diversity of all of these media is showcased in Lineage of Love, where earlier works are presented alongside Iannone’s more recent practice. A number of key works, such as the sculpture I Was Thinking of You and the two series of drawings An Icelandic Saga and The Story of Bern, are combined with less familiar works ranging from an early abstract painting, over a series of collages with Japanese paper and gold leaf, to a self-portrait in the shape of a polaroid, and a cooking diary from 1969. With this approach, the exhibition aims to paint the portrait of a versatile artist who has continually been on the move, looking for a symbiosis between art and her personal narratives, encounters, and passions.
In the 1960s, Iannone produced abstract expressionist works, yet from the 1970s onwards, she has developed in a more figurative direction with herself, her partner, and what she calls ‘ecstatic unity’ as central subjects. Iannone’s body, depicted as an ornately bejewelled divine Matriarch, becomes entangled with that of her Muse, Dieter Roth. Black lines and colour fields define overwhelming mosaics and two-dimensional tableaus of copulating couples whose male and female parts become interchangeable in the higher union of spiritual oneness. Confident women break free of all restraint and figure in a tale of love, sex, treason and power. The sexual act is emphasized and celebrated, much as it was in Antiquity. The artist’s many travels in Asia and Europe also left traces in her techniques and motifs. The perspectiveless compositions are reminiscent of Japanese woodblock prints, Greek vases or Middle-Eastern erotic paintings; her colourful mosaics and mandala-shapes recall Buddhist, Byzantine or 17th-century Baroque traditions.
Iannone’s work has often been subjected to censorship and has long been neglected. With the turn of the millennium, however, this has gradually changed and she has since exhibited solo shows in such venues as Air de Paris, Paris (2015); Peres Projects, Berlin (2014); Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich (2014); Berlinische Galerie, Berlin (2014); New Museum, New York (2009) and Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (2006).
Opening: Friday 23 September 2016 - 19:34
With ‘Kamp Kataloog’, KIOSK presents the first Belgian solo exhibition of Swiss artist and author Jérémie Gindre. The exhibition takes in changing settings and was conceived in a series of three episodes: the first of these took place in the summer of 2015 at the Centre d’art contemporain La Criée in Rennes, the second ‘campsite’ was erected in the spring of 2016 at La Kunsthalle in Mulhouse, and this fall, the series concludes with episode three at KIOSK. Like a panoramic landscape, these temporary ‘camps’ evolve with the seasons to develop numerous new stories along the way. Depending on the exhibition space and the season, the shows bring together a different combination of sculptures, drawings, and texts. In line with that concept, Gindre has rendered the title of the exhibition and book project, ‘Camp Catalogue’, in a Dutch-language version.
The show starts from our contact with nature and the way in which we attempt to shape, comprehend, and limit it. Gindre presents us with a poetic yet systematic study of the formal language of camping sites and their surroundings — fences, rivers, birds and beehives, but also that which takes place in the ground below. This results in a catalogue of landscape types that is not exhaustive or scientific in nature, but is primarily aimed at stirring the reader’s memory and imagination.
Coinciding with the exhibition is the publication of Jérémie Gindre’s artist’s book ‘Camp Catalogue’. The book includes the drawings and texts from the exhibitions, and is published by Lendroit éditions in cooperation with La Criée, Rennes, La Kunsthalle, Mulhouse and KIOSK, Ghent.
Jérémie Gindre is the author of about twelve books, including novels, short stories, essays, diaries, visual books, and more. These books deal with history, geography, conceptual art, neuro science, archaeology, and tourism, and the author playfully blends all of these disciplines. Gindre’s work has been exhibited at Kunsthaus Baselland, Muttenz (Switzerland); Kunstmuseum Thun (Switzerland); Museo de Arte Moderno, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Kunsthalle Fri-Art, Fribourg (Switzerland); La Criée centre d’art contemporain, Rennes (France) and La Kunsthalle, Mulhouse (France).