Photo Brussels Festival 06 — Selections
Galleries, artist-run spaces and museums have come together in order to invite visitors to discover the best photography offer in the Belgian capital. The 6th Edition began last week and will be running until 26 March 2022.
Spreading out in different parts of the city, Photo Brussels 06 brings us an exciting itinerary and programme of events, which can be discovered here. Created in 2015 by Hangar Photo Art Center, the festival has established a global program with numerous partnerships with venues from the whole city. Having Hangar as the pivotal organisation of the festival, its proposal for this year is a thematic exhibition which presents the work of a curated selection of photographers from all around the world.
Let’s see together what this year’s edition has prepared for all of us.
Co-founder of Collectif De Anima, Alice Pallot presents Mycelia 753 together with Ada Ventura, an artist-run space based in the borough of Ixelles. The collective was born as a multidisciplinary creative group that revolves around architecture, design, scenography and photography, among other disciplines. This exhibition is the fruit of a residency, built around a group of artists, scientists and craftsmen.
Combining different disciplines, Mycelia 753 is a film that interacts with a living installation produced by the collective. It presents a dialogue between the human being and the ultra-sensitive plant intelligence of the mushroom. De Anima takes a critical look at this new form of eugenics imposed by a dominant consumer society.
For this occasion, Almine Rech Brussels will present a selection of photographs by Lebanese video artist and photographer Ziad Antar; and German artist Gregor Hildebrandt. Also for this exhibition, the acclaimed Contraband series by American photographer Taryn Simon will be displayed.
Used to work with different photographic materials such as expired negatives or archival images, Ziad Antar focuses his practice on questioning the medium and its limitations. Putting attention to the materiality of the image, Antar’s works explore the dynamics between places, cultures, memories and disciplines.
Nostalgia plays an important role on Gregor Hildebrandt’s installations. Inspired by cinema and underground cultures, he combines in his work sound and tangible elements related with music such as vinyl records, magnetic tapes or CD’s. In a very subtle and poetic way, Hildebrandt creates reflective compositions that invite the viewer to enjoy the space.
Using also different techniques and mediums, the works from Taryn Simon put into the table the hidden problematics of power and authority in the society. The Contraband series is the best example of this long-term research project. After years of planning and investigation, she finally obtained access to a wide variety of institutions such as the US Department of Homeland Security, the CIA’s abstract art collection or Playboy Enterprises; where she produced a selection of photographs of seized objects by these organisations.
As the organiser of Photo Brussels Festival 06, Hangar is presenting a large group exhibition which showcases twenty photographic projects, among which are included the winners of Prize — Photo Brussels Festival 06: Benjamin Deroche, Yutao Gao and Kira Krasz.
Trees are the main subject of matter for this exhibition. The exhibition revolves around a deep analysis of the versatility of the world’s largest living organism, on how it is understood and represented through photography. The numerous works that conform the show, treat the theme together within its context. Sometimes standing alone, or surrounded by its equals; the tree (as a subject) raises awareness of the actual environmental and ecological situation that we are living, and what we can do to revert some processes like deforestation.
For his first solo exhibition at Irene Laub, Stijn Cole is presenting a new body of work: Souvenirs. These series were made during the first lockdown. Cole was back in Ghent and he saw a perfect opportunity to give recognition to the area of Chimay, where he lived for a few years. In his practice, Cole investigates the relationship between the subject and its natural environment combining analog and digital techniques. Time and light are elements that have been drawing his attention, and the impact that they have on the perception of the landscape.
Alongside with photography, Cole also uses other media such as painting in order to reduce his images to their purest essence. This exhibition presents some of his newest works where the artist explores shapes through installations and landscapes that invite the audience to wander around.
Originally from Ixelles, Agnès Varda has been represented by Nathalie Obadia since 2010. For the very first time, the curator and daughter of the artist, Rosalie Varda, presents a series of photographs never shown before, some of them archival material. Unfortunately, even having built an artistic career around photography, her work is still relatively unknown.
The show presents a variety of prints made by the artist in her darkroom and also posthumous silver prints. The title makes reference to her relationship and friendship with Alexander Calder, Germanine Richier, Valentine Shlegel and the Hungarian couple Vera and Pierre Székely. Images from performances, processes of artworks creation, artist’s studios and a long etcetera of personal memories, create an interesting exhibition that works as an historical archive which is relevant for the study of this Parisian period.