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What’s on this week: 2-8 September

10:18 01/09/2022
Beers on tap, art on display, outdoor festivals and world-class athletics, just a few of the activities on offer in Brussels and beyond…

Visitors will be spoilt for choice at Belgian Beer Weekend, which allows you to sample all the brews you want. There are more than 50 breweries here, from small-scale family operations to big name brands. With 500 beers on offer, it’s recommended that you pace yourself! Tip: Get your beer tokens on time; the queue is long, and they stop selling them an hour before the stands close. 2-4 September, Friday 18.00-22.30; Saturday 12.00-22.30; Sunday 12.00-20.00, Grand Place

courtesy Art Contest

Ten talented young artists are on show in ArtContest at the Vanderborght building. Any artist under the age of 35 who is Belgian or who lives in Belgium can enter the annual competition for prize money, to be included in this exhibition and to receive future advice and support to develop their careers. Come see who the experts think is the next big thing. 2-23 September, Rue de l’Ecuyer 50

c Forest Sounds

Close out Brussels’ summer festival season with Forest Sounds Festival, a laid-back affair at the Abbaye de Forest. An international line-up of musicians is super diverse – from afro psychedelic to trance to ’60 Greek revival – and it’s complemented with workshops and other activities for all ages. The entry is pay-what-you-can; book ahead online. 2-3 September, Forest Abbey Park

Milena Dopitová (c)Courtesy Bozar

The Czechs are in charge of the EU for the next six months, and they are making their presence felt in Brussels with exhibitions and activities. Artist Milena Dopitová created new work especially for the occasion, on view at Bozar. In the free exhibition Even Odd, she asserts that cultural differences among Europeans is central to the concept of solidarity. It’s easy to feel solidarity with people who are just like you, much harder with those who are very different – and what we must strive for every day. Until 30 October, Rue Ravenstein 23

Memorial Van Damme (c)Courtesy European Athletics

See athletics superstar Nafi Thiam perform in the long jump at this year’s Memorial Van Damme, fresh from defending her gold medal in the heptathlon at the European Championships. Others to look for at the annual athletics meeting are sprinter Erriyon Knighton, the 18-year-old American who’s already the fifth-fastest athlete in history, plus all three of Belgium’s Borlée brothers in the 400m. 2 September, King Baudouin Stadium, Avenue de Marathon 135 (Laeken)

Studio 5_Copyright Johan Jacobs 2

Film fans will welcome a new name on the arthouse movie circuit with the opening of Cineflagey on 1 September. A collaboration between Flagey, Cinematek and Kinograph (which closed at SeeU in June), the programme is designed to boost numbers for screenings at the emblematic arts centre. Daily screenings, monthly events and major festivals are all scheduled. Thursday evening’s launch is showing new thriller La Nuit du 12 in the presence of director Dominik Moll. From 1 September, Flagey, Place Sainte-Croix (Ixelles)

DELFT group photo 02_XX

Looking for a place to meet new friends, learn a new skill, and have a whole lot  fun with other English-speaking women from around the globe? The Brussels Women’s Club offers 30+ activities per month, from yoga and pilates to language and art classes and guided walks to full-day excursions, plus golf and tennis to mahjong and bridge... The largest English-speaking women's club in Belgium invites you to an Open Day at its clubhouse to discover for yourself. 8 October 10:00 -13:00, Rue au Bois 509 (Woluwe-Saint-Pierre)

Blackswan (c) DR Music Entertainment

Dive into the world of Korean pop and dance at K-Pop World Festival X Black Swan, an exciting double programme showcasing some of the best South Korean artists. The first part of the programme invites 13 solo or group teams for a dance contest, while multinational girl group Black Swan step on stage for the second half. A year after forming and launching first album Close to Me, the band will perform with a brand-new line-up (tickets €10). 4 September 19.30-22.00, La Madeleine, Rue Duquesnoy 14

Brussels - Shutterstock

With Brussels a major chocolate capital, it’s no surprise that the World Confectionery Conference is being staged in the city for the first time. The one-day event is opening its doors to the public, who are invited to rub shoulders with key movers and shakers in the cocoa industry. Top of the agenda is sustainability and responsible sourcing in the cocoa sector. Among key attendees at the event are Ferrero, Tony's Chocolonely, Luker Chocolate, Fairtrade and Brussels-based Caobisco European trade association. There’s also an exhibition, networking opportunities and a reception. Register here. 9 September 8.30-19.30, Brussels Marriott Hotel Grand Place, Rue Auguste Orts 3



Experience the enchantment of Tervuren’s Arboretum in a Howeward Bound Forest Therapy session. George Biesmans, a trained guide, leads regular groups in the woodlands to help people reconnect with the natural world. Forest therapy is the practice of slowing down, awakening the senses and listening to your body. 2, 23 & 30 September; 14, 21 & 28 October, 9.00-12.00

Objectif Bois Raphaël Zarka

Enghien’s contemporary art biennal Miroirs IV/Par enchantement invites visitors to enter a dream world. The outdoor promenade art exhibition displays works 15 artists that explore fantasy, mystery and the marvellous. Each edition of the event highlights local heritage treasures; this year the model room in the château tower is open to the public as well as a tapestry from a town museum. Both attractions also serve as inspiration for the artists (pictured: Bois Objectif Raphael Zarka). 3-18 September, Avenue Elisabeth, Parc Enghien

Albert Baertsoen, 'Ghent in the Evening', 1903 (c)Fine Arts Museum of Belgium

The Fine Arts Museum in Ghent is celebrating its 225th birthday this season. While the building doesn’t date that far back, the core collection does, making it the oldest museum collection in Belgium. Celebrations kick off with a Party Weekend featuring music, a bicycle parade, a maker’s market, dance initiations and free tours of the opening exhibition. That honour goes to Albert Baertsoen, “the painter of Ghent”, who documented the city’s buildings, harbours and street scenes at the turn of the 20th century. Party Weekend is free with advance registration. Party 2-4 September, Baertsoen exhibition 3 September to 27 November, Fernand Scribedreef 1 (Ghent)

Fire is Gold (2021)

One of the last hurrahs in Belgium’s festival summer is Fire is Gold, a music festival for sure but one that also celebrates hip-hop and rap culture in all its many forms, be it fashion, sport or diversity. Aside from the day-long line-up of local and international musicians and DJs are a tattoo studio, skatepark and debates. Dress comfortably – but cool. 3 September, Park Spoor Oost, Antwerp

Photos: (main image) Belgian beer weekend (c) Milo Profi; Albert Baertsoen, 'Ghent in the Evening', 1903 (c) Fine Arts Museum of Belgium



Written by Sarah Crew and Lisa Bradshaw