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What’s on this week: 22-28 February

16:29 21/02/2019
Our top picks of cultural events and activities in and around Brussels

Anyone who lives in Brussels knows about its hottest party of the year: Museum Night Fever. Buy a pass to get into 30 museums after-hours. They all put on something special, ranging from the beautiful to the daring to the weird. At the Kanal Centre you’ll find live painting, dance lessons and a life-size table football game. The Magritte Museum promises to immerse you in the artist’s surrealist world, including theatre pieces, clowns and a “Japanese dance of darkness”. And how great is it that Adam design museum just happens to have an exhibition on club culture? It turns into an actual club, of course. With seven new spots this year, it’s the biggest Museum Night Fever to date. Shuttle buses await to motor you between sites. Oh, and there’s an after-party. Which is kind of redundant, really. 23 February from 19.00, across Brussels

Cultural centre La Venerie is devoting a weekend to urban gardening. A performance tells the story of the lives that crossed in a co-operative garden project in Wallonia, with live drawing onstage. There is also a discussion on urban gardening dynamics and a tasting of freshly grown cops, aperitif and cheese. (In French) 1-2 March, La Venerie, Rue Gratès 3 (Watermael-Boitsfort)

Russia is famously authoritarian, and international headlines have not been shy about defending the rights of feminist protestors. Three Russian poets of different generations talk about patriarchy, taboos and stereotypes in their homeland. 28 February 20.00-21.30, Bozar, Rue Ravenstein 23

Religion in the City

Religions – all religions – struggle with misogyny. They might point their fingers at each other, but women can still not be Catholic priests, imams are by and large male, and Jewish Orthodox services still separate men and women. The second edition of Religion in the City features only female speakers, organised under the theme Body and Religion. There are debates in French, Dutch and English, including Body and Identity, Body and Love and Modesty, Fashion and Religion. There is also spoken word, film screenings and a closing talk by British author and former nun Karen Armstrong. 22-23 February, Flagey, Place Sainte-Croix (Ixelles)

And then there’s Brexit, the gift that keeps on giving. While information about the no-deal scenario changes by the day, the International School of Flanders’ Brexit Brief: Where Are We Now and What Happens Next? will try to make sense of the legal aspects for businesses and the financial situation for British expats. Guest speakers come from the British Chamber of Commerce and the Fry Group. To reserve a spot, email 28 February 20.30, ISF Tervuren, Stationsstraat 3 (Tervuren)

In September of this year the international arts community will recognise the 450th anniversary of the death of Pieter Bruegel the Elder, one of the most influential painters in the history of the world. Having lived and worked for much of his life in what is now Belgium, the country has many exhibitions and related activities planned. Bozar comes out of the starting block this week with two exhibitions: Bernard Van Orley: Brussels and the Renaissance and Prints in the Age of Bruegel. Stay tuned for info on an exhibition of works by the 16th-century master of the Flemish Renaissance at the Fine Arts Museums. 20 February to 23 June, Bozar, Rue Ravenstein 23

Apero Art

Apéro Art is ostensibly a painting class, but, as the ‘apero’ part might suggest, it’s mostly a fun way to get to know new people. Sign up individually, as a couple or as a group. Enjoy a glass of wine as you paint with professional expat artist Helen O’Sullivan. You are provided with all materials you need to create your own artwork that you can take home with you. Helen also runs Coffee Morning Art sessions with coffee, tea and pastries, from her studio in Brussels. Apéro Art: 28 February 18.30-20.30; Coffee Morning Art: 6 March 9.30-11.30, The Green Door, Rue Murillo 19

Artist Aline Bouvy takes visitors on a tour of an exhibition of work by fellow Belgian artist Benoit Platéus. The show One Inch Off is both a retrospective and the chance to see new works by the multi-media artist who questions notions of the original in an ever digital world. (In French) 20 February 19.00, Wiels, Avenue Van Volxem 354 (Forest)

It’s one month until the Passa Porta Festival, a biennial literary event that sees more than 100 authors in 70 readings and talks across Brussels. So the multi-lingual literary organisation is hosting the Passa Porta Festival Prelude, where Belgian celebs tell you who they’re looking forward to seeing at the festival and read from their work. (In French and Dutch) 28 February 20.00-21.00, Passa Porta, Rue Antoine Dansaert 46

Want to take your portrait photography to the next level? Expat photographer Haryo Nindito’s next seminar will teach you all you need to know about art portrait photography, whether you’re a pro or an amateur. 23 February 14.00-17.00, Bon Jour, Rue de Sceptre 57 (Ixelles)



The JEF Festival of film for young people casts its net wide age-wise, with something for tiny tots as well as cynical teenagers. Adults can also find flicks to their liking, such as the new Belgian film Binti (pictured) about an undocumented 12-year-old girl whose life of school and video-blogging is suddenly upended, Los Bando, a Norwegian movie about alt rock teenagers on a road trip to a band competition, and the stop-motion adventure Captain Morten and the Spider Queen. There are also concerts, workshops and meet-ups with directors and actors. 23 February to 10 March, across Flanders

Different generations often see their societies in different ways. When it comes to Russia, the propaganda and political upheaval of the last century combined with a rich art tradition makes the subject even more fascinating. That’s why Charleroi’s BPS22 is pairing contemporary artists Erik Bulatov (born in 1933 and still living in Russia) and Andrei Molodkin (born in 1969 and living in Paris) in the same show, dubbed Black Horizon. Both use colossal sculptures that often spell out just one or a few words; it’s not always the word itself but the way it is presented that tells the story. Until 19 May, BPS22, Boulevard Solvay 22, Charleroi

Photos: Museum Night Fever/DanielGonzalez, Religion in the City/Getty Images, Apero Art courtesy event, Binti courtesy Bullet Proof Cupid

Written by Lisa Bradshaw



30 museums after hours.....sounds like an incredibly stupid and poorly thought out idea....should I list the reasons why this makes no sense ?

Feb 22, 2019 17:11