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What’s on this week: 5-11 November

11:33 04/11/2021
Our top picks of events and activities in Brussels and beyond

Step into the Museum of Natural Sciences to come face to face with Trix, a 67 million-year old Tyrannosaurus rex. Her skeleton is impressive to say the least, and she will lead you through the exhibition T Rex, a journey of discovery about the dinosaur that continues to capture the imagination. You and your kids can observe, analyse and play interactive games in the shoes of a palaeontologist to learn what research has taught us about this ancient animal. Until 7 August 2022, Rue Vautier 29

The mythical and mystical world of the Orient Express reveals its opulent secrets in a major exhibition at Train World. A highlight of the Europalia Trains & Tracks festival, the exhibition tells the fascinating history of the visionary line and the story of its Belgian creator, Georges Nagelmackers. Steam locomotives, original carriages, posters, decorative objects and memorabilia recreate the atmosphere of the transcontinental train service in the 1920s and ’30s. Until 17 April, Princess Elisabeth Place 5 (Schaerbeek)

What’s better than one comic revealing the oddities of growing up in Alaska? Two comics revealing the oddities of growing up in Alaska. Erin Crouch and Kendra Borgen both traded the hardship of the American wilderness for the hardship of the German and Dutch language (respectively). They are in Brussels this week to present Gone Girls: Alaskans Gone Wild. 8 November 20.00, The Black Sheep, Chausée de Boondael 8 (Ixelles)

Installation at the Swipe Right! exhibition

How do people find love in the digital age? The exhibition Swipe Right! Data, Dating, Desire explores how screens are reshaping our personal relationships, affecting our sexual intimacy and influencing our desire for connection. Until 9 January, iMal, Quai des Charbonnages 30 (Molenbeek)

The Belgian Red Cross’s annual sale of used books got cancelled last year, so now the humanitarian organisation has twice the usual stock. This means some 120,000 English-language books priced €1 for two titles. There are books in all genres, from literature to cookbooks to children’s books. You’ll also find books in French, a small selection in other languages and toys and games. Not only are you stocking your bookshelf, you’re supporting the Red Cross as well. 9-17 November 10.00-18.00, Red Cross centre, Rue de Stalle 96 (Uccle)

Artwork from Before Time Began

The aboriginal cultures of Australia have been passing the concept of ‘Everywhen’ down through the generations for 65,000 years. An oral storytelling tradition, it was dubbed Dreamtime by early anthropologists, a term now widely used to describe how ancestral spirits roam the earth, creating and interacting with all living things and elements such as fire and water. Dreamtime is the focus of Before Time Began, an exhibition of works by contemporary aboriginal artists that explore the concept, which transcends time. Until 29 May, Art & History Museum, Parc of the Cinquantenaire 10

It’s the fifth edition of La Nuit des Écrivains, a four-hour marathon of readings and talks with six international authors who write in French. The line-up includes Belgian author Christine Aventin, whose latest work of non-fiction, FéminiSpunk, looks at girls in life and literature who did not conform to expectations, and Belgian author Adeline Dieudonné, who this year followed up her smashing debut La vraie vie with Kérozène, an equally celebrated novel that takes place over the course of two minutes. 10 November, Theatre 140, Avenue Plasky 140 (Schaerbeek)

A scene from L'Etang

Book now: L’Etang   Be among the last to get tickets for this unusual musical theatre piece by Franco-Austrian performance artist Gisèle Vienne. She is known for her life-size puppets, created for works such as this one, which is about a child who stages his own death to win love his mother’s love. (In French with English and Dutch surtitles) 18-20 November, Kaaitheater, Sainctelettesquare 20

Personal development coach Lisa Kretschmann leads the workshop What the Hell is Purpose? at the next gathering of the Brussels Imagination Club. The concept of ‘purpose’, she says is often confused with finding one, and only one, meaning in your life, which creates anxiety more than anything else. This workshop explores the meanings of purpose and investigates how we can bring it into our everyday lives. (In English) 10 November 18.45-21.00, Kreativa, Rue Volta 8 (Ixelles)

A film still from Presque

OUTSIDE BRUSSELS

As Belgium’s only international film festival dedicated to disability and difference, The Extraordinary Film Festival (Teff) is on a mission to change the public’s perception via more than 50 short and feature films. Over the past decade, the biennial event has grown in notoriety worldwide. Teff opens with Presque, an unlikely road movie by Bernard Campan and Alexandre Jollien (pictured) that follows the pair – one without a disability, the other with cerebral palsy – on their journey to freedom from Lausanne to the Cévennes aboard a funeral hearse. In addition to festival hub Namur, screenings are programmed in other Walloon cities and Brussels. 10-14 November, le Delta, Avenue Golenvaux 18, Namur and across Belgium

An installation by Daniel Margraf

If you miss out on Bright Brussels, fear not, a similar event takes to Ghent this month. The acclaimed Gent Light Festival see glowing, flashing and twinkling light installations and holograms staged across the capital of East Flanders. A seven-kilometre parcours leads you along 32 installations, so plan one long evening or split it in two. Or just see part of it; it’s free to access, and you can start and stop wherever you please. 10-14 November, across Ghent

A work by Naomi Quashie

Rethink fluidity – in all areas of your life – at the Ottignies-Louvain-La-Neuve Contemporary Art Triennial, which has invited 27 local and international artists to explore the multi-faceted concept. They include sculptor and performer Naomi Quashie, who tackles stereotypes around black identity (pictured). The 10th edition of the event, entitled Magma, is spread across three sites in the two neighbouring towns as well as Botanique and Wolubilis in Brussels and the Centre Wallonie Bruxelles in Paris. Until 28 November, across Belgium

Photos, from top: Courtesy RBINS, ©Mediengruppe Bitnik, ©Vincent Girier-Dufournier / Fondation Opale, ©Estelle Hanania, courtesy Allociné, ©Bart van Overbeeke, ©Silvia Cappellari. Sorry! Our prize draw has now closed and the winner has been notified.

Written by Lisa Bradshaw and Sarah Crew