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What’s on this week: 22-28 January

18:34 21/01/2021
Our pick of Belgium’s best activities – online and off – for the coming week

Full Circle international club hosts a talk with Australian philosopher Roman Krznaric (pictured) who will run us through the basics of his latest book, The Good Ancestor: How to Think Long Term in a Short-Term World. The club will also soon welcome American anthropologist Gabriella Coleman for a discussion on the influence of the far-right on social media. Coleman has been rescheduled from a planned appearance last month. The talks are online and in English. Krznaric: 28 January 19.00, Coleman: 9 February 19.00

Opera Ballet Vlaanderen were meant to be staging Tristan und Isolde as we speak. Instead, the local and international cast has assembled for Finally 2021, a festive New Year concert of arias from popular works such as Fidelio, Macbeth and The Magic Flute. It’s the first time in 10 months that the company’s symphony and chorus are performing together again. It is being livestreamed from the Ghent opera house. 23 January 20.00

The first online retrospective of films by the late Chantal Akerman is being offered online in Belgium, France and Luxembourg only. In co-operation with Belgian film archive Cinematek, 10 of the pioneering feminist director’s films are available, including the masterpiece Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles. English and Dutch subtitles are available on all films. 25 January to 15 March

Brafa

Online art and antiques sales were popular even before corona, but this is the first year that Brussels annual centuries spanning market of artworks, furniture, jewellery and other decorative objects has gone digital. Visitors to Brafa@Home in the Galleries are invited into the living rooms and studios of dealers in Belgium and around the world. They are setting up their own exhibition spaces, like at the real event. 27-31 January

The French embassy in Belgium, Bozar and UCLouvain are partnering for the local edition of the Night of Ideas, an annual evening of talks, presentations and performance on big issues of the day. The Belgian edition includes Live Magazine, in which journalists talk you through a story, followed by debates on the theme of Borders. (In French) 28 January

Belgian yoga studio Yoga4You is offering a livestreamed Restorative Yoga class in English for free. And hasn’t the world given you enough reason lately to need a little restoration? 28 January 12.15-13.15

Iselp

A two-part exhibition celebrates the work and ideas of Gianni Pettena, a big shot in the Radical Architecture scene of 1960s and ’70 Italy. He wanted to abandon the basic, understood structures of architecture and replace them with something more artistic. Forgiven by Nature looks at his architecture and art that fused the natural and domestic. Until 13 March, Iselp and La Verrière

Clue in to the concept of ‘design thinking’ at the next discussion of the Brussels Imagination Club. An expert will lead you through a workshop on the process of thinking things through the way innovative product designers do – with context analysis, reasoning and adapting to find solutions. (In English) 27 January 19.00

The Hottest August

Based between Toronto and New York, geographer and filmmaker Brett Story talks to Bozar about her film The Hottest August, a month in the life of New York City during a turbulent period politically and environmentally. See the movie, then hear the Q&A. 29 January 10.00

Brussels Philharmonic offers a two-part concert experience this weekend. Its Up Close & Personal series – chamber music concerts by individual musicians – features Guillaume Connesson’s Les Chants de l’Agartha and Rachmaninov’s Cello Sonata. Following that is a concert by the full orchestra livestreamed from Flagey, with Stravinsky’s Dumbarton Oaks and Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony on the programme. 23 January 20.00-21.00

Gustave Van de Woestyne

OUTSIDE BRUSSELS

It’s the final weekend of the Gustave Van de Woestyne exhibition at Ghent’s Fine Arts Museum. An artist of the Latem School of the first half of the 20th century, Van de Woestyne illustrated people and landscapes with blunt lines, bold colours and different levels of abstraction to create a sympathetic vision of the people of rural Flanders. Until 24 January, Fernand Scribedreef 1, Ghent

Photos, from top: ©Kate Raworth; S Pinto collection, Oporto; ©Studio Gianni Pettena; courtesy Bozar; ‘Deeske’ (detail), 1902, Gustave Van de Woestyne, collection MSK Ghent