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Open studio

Open studio

On the 14th and 15th of May, the open studio weekend for visual artists all over Flanders and Brussels, Jester (former FLACC/CIAP). We offer you a sneak peek at our the different workshops: like the ceramics, the metal and the digital studio. During your visit we offer you a unique inside in the methodology of our Artist in residence: Arjun Das (IN) and in the ceramics studio, we present work in progress by Sarah van Sonsbeeck (NL). Simultaneously in the ceramics workshop, we cast the new Jester coffee mugs in moulds and invited an artist to use the turntable. 


Not only do our residents find their way to our studios, but also many other artists and makers rent our facilities to create projects that have specific technical needs. Interested in getting started? During our Open Studios, we present the studio formulas and our team members can help you out with practical questions you may have. On Saturday the 14th of May, we also present our collaboration with vzw Het Steger in the form of a community kitchen. Feel free to take a look at the café and order a special snack and drink!



Saturday  & Sunday the 14th & 15th of May, 1 till 5 p.m.


Arjun Das –  open studio
Arjun Das (IN) comes from a family of migrant workers who travelled through India in their search for work. During his working period, he wants to get in touch with migrant workers in Genk and transform their stories into woodcuts and other works. For this project, he mainly woks with  used materials, such as reclaimed wood.


Sarah van Sonsbeeck- presentation work in progress in the ceramic studio
Sarah van Sonsbeeck (NL) is interested in monuments, and in particular in ‘accidental monuments’: objects that are given a role in remembering and commemorating because of certain events. She asks questions like “Why don’t monuments change when our thinking about important themes and historical events does?”


Activated ceramics studio
In the ceramics workshop, there is even more to see. We cast the new Jester coffee mugs, and we invite an artist to use the turntable.


Community kitchen in the café * Only on Saturday
In the café we present our collaboration with vzw Het Steger in the form of a community kitchen. Feel free to take a look and order a yummy snack and drink!



On Saturday and Sunday the 14th and  15th of May, we open our doors between 1 and 5 p.m. The admission is, of course, free of charge. Location: Casino Modern, André Dumontlaan 2, 3600 Genk.

Three Tropes for Entropy
Edition Launch

Three Tropes for Entropy
Edition Launch

“Eu era gases puro, ar, espaço vazio, tempo.”

“I was pure gas, air, empty space, time.”

01.05.2022 – …



You are kindly invited to the third and final event of Three Tropes for Entropy. The third trope of the exhibition will take the form of a collective edition. The launch will be held at the studio of Angyvir Padilla this Sunday, 1st of May, from 1-7pm.


The edition’s presentation marks the dissolution of the transformative exhibition, an outcome of the Lichen Curatorial Prize 2021-22, organized by Jester (former FLACC/CIAP) and Curatorial Studies KASK. This final gesture of launch introduces an indetermination to the exhibition process, which has no fixed end date but keeps existing in different forms, like molecules of gas once compressed into a condensed space and suddenly freed into the ambient.



The collective edition includes three printed pieces. Created by Angyvir Padilla, mountaincutters and Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, all prints stem from the textual practice embedded in the artists’ processes:

Edition proposal by Angyvir Padilla

Executed in reflective, translucent ink and supplemented with a handmade match that activates the reflection effect in the dark, the silkscreen print by Angyvir Padilla borrows verses from the poetry of Argentinian writer Alejandra Pizarnik. The final result is a print that can be activated as an instalative piece.


Edition proposal by mountaincutters

The inkjet prints by mountaincutters were presented in the exhibition – first in Jester’s exhibition space and later moved to C-mine’s compressor’s hall for the second trope of the exhibition. Every print carries a unique poem written by the artist duo and is supplemented with magnets for hanging.


Edition proposal by Daniel Steegmann

Executed in graphite ink, the recto-verso silkscreen print by Daniel Steegmann Mangrané shows an excerpt originally coming from Stella do Patrocínio’s oral poetry, defined by her as acts of gabbling. Compulsorily admitted into a mental asylum, Stella do Patrocínio was a maker of poems that were never written down but took visual form through the interpretation of Steegmann Mangrané. Mirrored, oblique, fractured, and incised, the typography remains translucent and void—as light as thin air, like gas, as the empty space and time evoked by the self-description of Stella do Patrocínio.


All silkscreen pieces are exquisitely printed by Camping Penrose / Liselotte van Daele.





The edition launch takes place at the studio of Angyvir Padilla during the  38st Art Brussels weekend on Sunday the 1st of May from 1 to 7 p.m. You can find us at the following address: Jennartstraat 46, 1080 Sint-Jans-Molenbeek, Brussels.



Lichen is a prize for emerging curators, established by Jester (former FLACC/CIAP) and the department of Curatorial Studies at KASK School of Arts to foster and support curatorial experimentation in Belgium. With the support of the Flemish Community, the City of Genk, and the Jester members.


Conflict Zones
a series of online talks

Conflict Zones
a series of online talks

Conflict Zones is a series of online conversations around conflicts of different kinds, with various degrees of visibility and scope. Conflict Zones takes place every fortnight on Tuesday at 7 p.m.


Click on this link to follow the conversation on Zoom. No registration required.


In the series, we exchange thoughts and personal stories with artists and cultural workers who are facing a precarious situation as a result of different kinds of conflict: military and political but also legal, ethical, or other; at a workplace, at home, or in exile. The series gives platform and visibility to the practices that might be underexposed or even under attack at the given moment. During intimate talks, we are trying to unveil different layers of conflict and foreground how they disrupt artistic practices and daily lives alike. We want to listen. Truly listen.


We do not claim to be objective nor comprehensive. The making of the series is inspired by the improv acting methodology that lies at the core of Jester. We always start from a speaker we have a connection with, as an organisation and as people, and from a subject with a sense of urgency. From there, we see how the programme will unfold. 


Due to the current war in Ukraine, the topic of conflict became even more imminent in the general programme ideas for Jester. Departing from conversations with Ukrainian curator Alexandra Tryanova, our intern, and some of the Ukrainian artists with whom we have worked in the past, formed the catalyst for this initiative. Based on that, we decided to address this urgency first within our series. This is followed by all kinds of ‘conflicts’ that are linked to the organisation; materials that conflict with each other, neighbours who have to get used to a new art building in their backyard, or a court case about ownership. 



Conflict Zones 03

Sophia Bulgakova (born 1997, Odesa, Ukraine) is an ArtScientist, interdisciplinary artist and activist currently based in The Hague, the Netherlands. Sophia is working on the intersection between art, technology, and society, focusing on the relationship between light, perception, and imagination. Through various sensorial inputs in her installations and performances, she engages viewers, impacting their ways of perceiving reality and exploring new possibilities beyond it. In her most recent work, she investigates Ukrainian paganism and its impact on contemporary society and national identity.
Sophia studied sculpture in Kyiv and then got a foundation diploma in Photography and Time-Based Media at the University of the Arts London in the UK. After that, she graduated from the ArtScience Interfaculty at the Royal Academy of the Art and Royal Conservatory in The Hague, the Netherlands. Her works were exhibited at CTM Festival (DE), Sonic Acts Festival (NL), Baltan Laboratories (NL), Mediamatic (NL), and Ningbo City Exhibition Hall (CN), among other places.
This event is held in English.



Conflict Zones 02

Our second guest was Nadia Parfan, a Ukrainian film director, producer and curator. Her student film “Reve ta Stohne on Tour” received a special mention at DocudaysUA and her last film, “Heat Singers”, was premiered at Visions du Reel cinema festival and was selected to several other international film festivals. Nadia is the co-founder of the Festival of Film and Urbanism 86, which took place in Slavutych from 2014 to 2018.


She is also the author of the idea and creative producer of the documentary project MyStreetFilmsUkraine, in which Ukrainian directors have created and released 49 short films. In 2018, Nadia together with producer Ilya Gladstein has founded the production company Phalanstery Films. In January 2020 Nadia launched a streaming platform which provides legal access to Ukrainian films. 



Conflict Zones 01

Our first guest was culturologist Olha Honchar (UA), a project and communications, anti-crisis manager. She is the director of the Memorial Museum of Totalitarian Regimes ‘Territory of Terror’ in Lviv en researches the features of PR, cultural and museum management in Ukraine. Besides, she is responsible for the communication of the projects ‘Cultural diplomacy between the regions of Ukraine’ in the frontline and liberated cities of Donetsk and Luhansk regions: ‘The museum is open for renovation’,  the expedition ‘HERE AND THERE’ and others.


At the Luhansk Regional Museum in Starobilsk, Honchar is Co-curator of the experimental exposition of the Anti-Terrorist Operation. She is the initiator of the ‘Museum Crisis Center’ and the ‘Ambulance Museum project’, which emerged the first days of the Russian war against Ukraine.


How to support the Museum Crisis Center?


For payments in euro:

BENEFICIARY: ngo insha osvita
Id. Code: 40289892
IBAN: UA933355480000026008053635051
Legal address: Lva Zhemchuzhnikova st. 5, appt. 6, 79053, Lviv, Ukraine
Details of payment: charity donation for “Museum Crisis Center”


The Museum Crisis Center is a grassroots initiative of Olha Honchar, a culturologist and director of the Lviv Territory of Terror Museum, which is implemented in partnership with Insha Osvita and the New Museum NGO. The Museum Crisis Center has already been supported by the European Commission (within the Strength Here project), the Kyiv Biennale (as part of its own urgent initiative to support the art community), the PinchukArtCentre, the German MitOst e.V., and a number of private patrons.

The Museum Crisis Center aims to provide financial, organizational and human support to small regional museums and their teams in times of crisis. While the state saves the funds of large national museums in the first place, local museum institutions, which are a vascular network of culture, are often overlooked. The Museum Crisis Center sees value in every local museum institution and in the people who preserve that knowledge and collection.

The Museum Crisis Center is an initiative that will be relevant in the postwar period as well. Not only to restore the network of local museums, return collections, restore exhibits and inventory, but also as a tool of mutual assistance in various crisis situations. The Museum Crisis Center is an association that will launch a number of projects, the first of which is Ambulance museum initiative.


For partnerships and support, or other forms of payment, write to,



Marianne Berenhaut
Book launch & film screening

Marianne Berenhaut
Book launch & film screening

This event is free.

Reserve your seat here.

Mine de rien, publication, 2022


Following Marianne Berenhaut’s solo exhibition at CIAP and C-mine at the turn of 2021 and 2022, we are delighted to welcome the artist to Genk again, on the occasion of the release of her publication Mine de rien. This publication brings together the documentation of the exhibition, set in the unique interiors of C-mine,  with the selection of never published archival materials. These outspoken images are accompanied by texts by Louise Osieka (director C-mine), Barbara Cuglietta (director Jewish Museum of Belgium) and Alicja Melzacka (curator CIAP), each offering a different perspective on this rich oeuvre. 


We will start the day by diving into the film archive and presenting selected short documentaries by three filmmakers: Violaine de Villers, André Dartevelle, and Serge Simon. Each film focuses on a different period of Berenhaut’s work and offers a unique insight into her working process and the context surrounding her practice. 


Following the screening, we will officially launch the publication, developed on the occasion of Berenhaut’s solo exhibition at CIAP and C-mine. In conversation with Nadine Plateux, feminist activist and writer, and Alicja Melzacka, the editor of the book, the artist will speak about the publication and her work at large. The conversation will be moderated by Louise Osieka.


design & photo: Hannah Sakai




2 p.m. Word of welcome, Kleine Zaal, C-mine


2.15-3.15 p.m.  Screening 


  • Les familles de Marianne Berenhaut by Violaine de Villers, 2011, 18’,
    French, English subtitles
  • Poupées-poubelles by Violaine de Villers, 2010, 8’, not spoken
  • Vie privée, Marianne Berenhaut. Trente ans de sculptures by
    André Dartevelle, 2002, 30’55’’, French, English subtitles
  • Serge Simon, 2022, ca 5′


3.20-3.45 p.m. Break


3.45-4.30 p.m. Book launch, Kleine Zaal, C-mine


  • Marianne Berenhaut in conversation with Nadine Plateau and Alicja Melzacka,
    moderated by Louise Osieka


Mine de rien is published by CIAP and co-produced by C-mine and Dvir Gallery, and it will be available for sale during the event and subsequently, at C-mine’s shop and via CIAP’s webshop.


Art Trip
Visit Museum M & Wiels

Art Trip
Visit Museum M & Wiels

Museum M | Alexis Gautier L’heure de la soupe

Wiels | Kasper Bosmans Husbandry


© Alexis Gautier

On Saturday 12 March, we take you on an art trip with artist Alexis Gautier, our artistic director Orlando Maaike Gouwenberg and our team. Together, we will visit Museum M in Leuven and Wiels in Brussels, as part of Alexis’ residency and in the run-up to his solo presentation with us coming May.


Through cultural exchange and shared interests, Alexis Gautier explores various ways of collaboration within his artistic practice. Encounters, misunderstandings or coincidences determine the protagonists of the creative playground in which his works emerge.

We meet Alexis together with curator Eva Wittocx in Museum M, where they guide us through his solo exhibition L heure de la soupe. This presentation is the outcome of a creative process that Alexis describes as ‘collective fictional writing’. Various colleagues, craftspeople, museum staff and namesakes all contributed to the overarching story in their various ways. It’s guaranteed that this visit will be accompanied by many interesting anecdotes.


Kasper Bosmans,Legend: American Picket Fence and the Pink Thread, 2021 Courtesy Gladstone Gallery and the artist

After we visit museum M, we will travel to Wiels, where Alexis is currently in residence. Alexis will spice up the bus trip with a little artistic intervention. After a delicious lunch in Wiels, we visit the exhibition ‘Husbandry’ by Kasper Bosmans. Curator Zoë Gray is happy to welcome us. Coincidence or not? Kasper and Alexis are friends, and they have worked together in the past.


Anyone who remembers Kasper Bomans’ exhibition Loot, Soil And Cleanliness in the old CIAP-building knows that he is a natural storyteller. He unravels old stories, obscure anecdotes or current events and combines them into new, visual narratives. Bosmans employs local, vernacular traditions to address global questions in a playful manner. After the exhibition visit, we are welcome to join Kasper’s book launch. Dovetail is the first monographic overview of the artist’s oeuvre to date.


PROGRAMME (Saturday, 12.03.22)

  • 09:30-11:00  a.m. – Bus trip from Limburg with stops in Genk, Hasselt and Lummen
  • 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. – Guided tour by Alexis & Eva at Museum M (EN & NL)
  • 12:30-1:20 p.m. – Bus trip with an artistic intervention
  • 1:20-2:45 p.m. – Lunch: soup of the day, quiche, salad, coffee and thee
  • 2:45-3:45 p.m. – Guided tour by Zoë at Wiels (EN)
  • 4:00-6:00 p.m. – Book launch Dovetail
  • 6:00 -7:30 p.m. – Bus ride back to Limburg


© Alexis Gautier



Reservations can be made by sending an e-mail to or via phone 089 65 50 88 (only on Thursday and Friday). Be sure to mention the trip, your surname + first name, contact details and the tariff you will be paying. Don’t forget to choose your pick-up location (Genk, Hasselt, Lummen). Please note that your participation is only fully confirmed after transfer of the registration fee via IBAN: BE44 1324 3606 3945 (please mention your name + CIAP trip March)



We have different rates for this trip, please choose the one that suits you. Please do not forget to bring your ID, student card or museum pass as proof. What’s included in the price? The registration fee includes entrance fees, lunch, bus rides and guided tours!

  • -18 & ‘young members’ – 30 euros
  • Youth -25  – 40 euros
  • Members – 47 euros
  • Members with Museum Pass – 40 euros
  • Non-members – 53 euros
  • Non-members with Museum Pass – 46 euros



A maximum of 35 people can participate in this trip. We take the current Covid regulations into account that are valid at the time of the excursion. For the time being, a CST is still required to gain access to museums in Brussel. At a later stage, registered participants will receive more practical information by e-mail. If you have any questions in the meantime, feel free to contact us!


Ciel Grommen & Maximiliaan Royakkers
First Firing

Ciel Grommen & Maximiliaan Royakkers
First Firing

4.30-7.00 pm

In the years 2020-21, artist-architects Ciel Grommen and Maximiliaan Royakkers (BE) developed site-specific research, departing from CIAP’s transition and its move to the post-industrial landscape of Genk. With help of local experts and enthusiasts, the artists produced a unique series of ‘the devils of Winterslag’ — the bricks once produced at Winterslag from residual material of the mining process. In the next stage, these bricks were used to build a layered platform in the open air. Inspired by the Chinese ‘kang bed’ and the Russian ‘pechka stove’, this brick ‘daybed’ can be heated from the inside, creating a welcoming atmosphere for people to gather or for small animals to seek shelter in its nooks and crannies.


In this artist talk, Ciel Grommen and Maximiliaan Royakkers share more information and anecdotes about their research project. The talk took place in July 2021 at CIAP, as part of the programme ‘Domesticity and Hospitality’.




On the 05 of February from 4:30 p.m., the first official firing session will be organised. We hope to welcome you to the heated daybed together with the artists. There will be signalisation on the C-mine site.

In the future, the heated daybed will continue to be used for various artistic activities, but we will also share it with the residents of Genk. Would you like to use the daybed for your event? Contact FLACC/CIAP.


Ula Sickle
Private Collection/ Collection Privée

Ula Sickle
Private Collection/ Collection Privée

© Ula Sickle


In Private Collection/ Collection Privée, Ula Sickle  takes the audience on a detour-ridden journey through Marianne Berenhaut’s exhibition Mine de rien.


Inspired by the materiality of Poupéés-Poubelles—made of sheer nylon tights stuffed with textiles and daily objects—Sickle invited Sabrina Seifried and Joëlle Laederach to develop a series of wearable pieces, using natural latex—a mutable material known for its healing, protective, and sensual properties.


In choreography developed by Sickle and performer Katja Dreyer, and accompanied by the live music by Raphaël Hénard, Dreyer will activate the pieces directly in the exhibition space.


It is not the first time Berenhaut’s work crosses paths with performing arts; several sculptures from the series Poupéés-Poubelles accompanied actor Brigitte Louveaux in a stage play which toured Europe in the 1980s, and which provided the context for this invitation.



The tour will be about fifteen minutes long and will take place three times throughout the day at:


– 2:00 p.m. SOLD OUT
– 4:00 p.m. SOLD OUT
– 6:00 p.m.


Private Collection/ Collection Privée has been developed on the occasion of Marianne Berenhaut’s solo exhibition Mine de rien at CIAP and C-mine, Genk. Your ticket for the exhibition on 16.01 also grants you access to the performance. Do not forget to reserve the time slot via this link.


The meeting point is in the room 3 of the exhibition (Design Centrum, 1st floor of the Energy Building).



Ula Sickle (CA/PL) is a choreographer and performer based in Brussels, Belgium. From a background in contemporary dance, she works across disciplines, drawing from the visual arts or contemporary music. While her work takes many forms, she focuses on a choreographic approach to movement and a work on perception and reception, specific to the live arts.



Concept & choreography Ula Sickle

Creation & performance Katja Dreyer

Live sound Raphaël Hénard

Latex pieces Sabrina Seifried & Joëlle Laederach


Special thanks to Marianne Berenhaut & Brigitte Louveaux. Commissioned by CIAP and C-mine in the context of Marianne Berenhaut’s exhibition Mine de rien. With the kind support of the Flemish Community, the city of Genk and CIAP members.


Filmstill Carnet-Collages, Marianne Berenhaut
Kinderkunstendag Marianne Berenhaut
bricolage workshop

Kinderkunstendag Marianne Berenhaut
bricolage workshop

Filmstill ‘Carnet-Collages’, Marianne Berenhaut


On kinderkunstendag (art for children day) CIAP & C-mine organise a special workshop inspired by the work of visual artist Marianne Berenhaut. The workshop was initiated within the framework of Marianne’s solo exhibition Mine de Rien, which is currently on display at CIAP & C-mine, Genk.


Playfully, the children discover her series of works called Carnet-Collages. Marianne makes them alongside her sculptural practice. All sorts of collected materials and small everyday objects are incorporated in the collages. From that perspective, you can see these works as sculptures on paper. With children, we will not only zoom in on these special works and on Marianne’s practice, but we will also get to work ourselves with paper, found objects, pencils… Just like a real artist!


The workshop takes place on Sunday 21 November in the Compressors hall of the C-mine Energy Building. Children from 6 to 12 years old can work for two hours to create their own collages, under the guidance of art teacher Elke Cuppens. There are two entry moments, one at 1 p.m. and one at 4 p.m. The places are limited to 12 children per session. The workshop is free, but reservation is required.
This workshop is held in Dutch.



Apples & Oranges
an artists' publications and multiple fair

Apples & Oranges
an artists' publications and multiple fair

photo: Alexandra Bertels


Apples & Oranges brings together artists engaging in experimental publishing and, through their work, probing the extremities of this term. Combining a curated fair section with a lively public programme of performances, interventions and talks, the event presents a variety of material, digital and performative approaches to artists’ publications. By reaching across disciplinary boundaries and engaging with practices, formats, and genres on the fringe —self-publishing, collective writing and reading, fan-fiction, zines, book-objects…—it creates a platform for debate on what publishing as an artistic practice may mean today.


The title, Apples & Oranges, alludes to Clive Phillpot’s notorious fruit salad diagram — comparative in nature and yet open to necessary nuance. In that diagram, apples and pears yield lemons, illustrating an impossible attempt at categorising the plethora of forms resulting from the marriage of ‘art’ and ‘books’.   


One of the most interesting things about artists’ publications, and self-publishing in particular, is that it is often an engine for collaboration and leads to the development of intricate systems of networks and ‘scenes’. Apples & Oranges features a sample of these networks and, at the same time, encourages new connections to emerge.


Publishing means bringing something out to the world, sharing it with others – sometimes in direct proximity, but often at a distance. Publications travel through different, more or less visible and official distribution channels, passing from hand to hand, getting further and further away from their makers. Apples & Oranges presents an opportunity for an encounter between the publication makers, lovers, and public, for the flow of transactions and other non-monetary exchanges.




Ana Mendes ­ An Onghena BALTA (Anne-Marie Durand) ­ Ben Leenen ­ Che Go Eun +  Power Metal Protection (Yemo Park & Xavier Frederick) ­ CLAUS  BOOKS (Ines Claus) ­ CLUBEFEMEER (Arnaud De Wolf & Maarten Vanermen) Dries Segers ­ ­ Ella De Burca ­ Emily Kelly Gilles Hellemans­ — Infinitif (Tim Bruggeman & Jelle Martens) — Ignace Schretlen ­ Intermerz (Remco Roes & Koenraad Claes) ­ Josephine Kaeppelin Karina Beumer ­ Katrin Kamrau ­ Level Five / Salon Sale Lize Plomteux ­ Lucia Mrakovcic ­ Marieke Gelissen ­ ­ Maud Vande Veire ­ Nabil Aniss ­ Nina Glockner ­ Oliver Leu ­ Pierre Corric ­ Pink House Press (Ersi Varveri & Gijs Waterschoot) ­  PXL-MAD / READSEARCH (Ancy Camps, Celine Mannens, Fay Janssen, Carl Haase, Ann Bessemans, Janneke Janssen, Aline De Feyter, Laura Kreemers, Marta Guidotti, Céline van Bakel, María Pérez Mena, Walda Verbaenen, Kevin Bormans) ­ Reinier Vrancken ­ Rod Summers ­ Varamo Press Wannes Missotten ­ William Ludwig Lutgens ­ Wool Collective (Eline De Clerq & Koyuki Kazahaya) ­




ONGOING  MARJOLEIN GULDENTOPS, The Bureau of Lost Causes, 2021, performance

13.00 ADRIJANA GVOZDENOVIC, On a Drift II, video presentation

13.30 MARTINE FOLKERSMA, Cameo Appearances, performance

14.00 SIWAR KRAYTEM & RASHA DAKKAK, Language Café: The Language of Oppression and Resistance, workshop I (reservation required)

15.00 NIELS POIZ, FEELINGS, Sentiments, Gevoelens, Gefühle, performance

16.00 ALEXIS GAUTIER, Moving with the shape of an eight, book presentation

16.30 JEROEN PEETERS, The elusive eloquence of dozing off, lecture-performance

17.00 SIWAR KRAYTEM & RASHA DAKKAK, Language Café: The Language of Oppression and Resistance, workshop II (reservation required)




All profit from the sale of the works remains with the artist. The fair section and public programme are curated by a group of professionals from the partner organisations. The selection took place directly and via the open call. 




The fair takes place at the compressors hall at C-mine, Genk (1st floor of the Energy Building) on the 2nd of October, from 12 am until 6 pm. The list of the participating artists will be announced in August, and the results of the open call will be made known in early September. The public programme unfolding in the same space during the fair will follow soon. The entry is free of charge.


Apples and Oranges is a collaboration between CIAP & FLACC, Genk; KRIEG, PXL Mad, Zero Desk, Hasselt; B32, Maastricht; C-mine, Genk. With kind support of the Flemish Community, the city of Genk and CIAP members.

Vermeir & Heiremans and Luke Mason
7 WALKS (resolution)

Vermeir & Heiremans and Luke Mason
7 WALKS (resolution)

The Musée de la Ville d’eaux in the city of Spa (BE) presents 7 WALKS (resolution) a project by artist duo Vermeir & Heiremans and legal philosopher Luke Mason. This first public installment of an extended collaboration between the museum and the artists offers an experimental perspective on the city’s rich history of water. 


7 WALKS (resolution) consists of a series of walks in the therapeutical landscape around the city. These walks will inform and complement a small presentation in development in the museum, with archival documents and maps that will situate the walks in their historical and socio-economic context.



Spa became renowned for its medicinal water as early as the 16th century. Its ferrogenous spring water not only attracted many visitors, it was also exported internationally. Gradually the city became the so-called ‘Café de l’Europe’. Visited by kings and czars, political refugees, artists and philosophers, it was a peaceful haven where a wide range of philosophies, social questions and artistic visions could interact. The ‘bobelins’, as the locals used to call these international visitors, walked through the surrounding forests, along landscaped paths on their way to the springs. They came for their health, but also to see and be seen, for diplomacy or espionage, and even for the arts. The local painter Antoine Fontaine depicted these illustrious visitors in Le Livre d’Or (1894), a 9 metres wide group portrait spanning four centuries of visitors.


Next month Spa shall be added to the list of protected immaterial heritage by UNESCO. 7 WALKS (resolution) draws inspiration from the intangible legacy of historical walkers and, strongly anchored in a local context, invites its participants to discuss and explore a balance between private property of and access to resources that we hold in common as a society. Spa offers the project the unique opportunity for a series of itinerant reflections on water and art.


Each of the walks embodies this thematic focus through a selection of inspiring historical visitors, such as the art dealer Ernest Gambart (1814-1902) who lived at the Château d’Alsa in Spa. Before settling in Spa Gambart’s London business unquestionably pioneered the commercial gallery system as is still in use today. The project also includes the philosopher J.P.Proudhon. When living in Brussels as a refugee of justice, he regularly visited the liberal journalist and social utopist Alexandre Delhasse in Spa. Or Gustave Courbet, who befriended Proudhon, and promoted his ideas on mutualism. Courbet visited Spa twice during a long journey through the low lands. 


7 WALKS (resolution) responds to current and recently intensified debates about the position of art in today’s society. Like water, art can be considered a basic necessity of life, a proposal that many international resolutions have promoted. The project questions how basic human rights enter into dialogue with individual private property- and exclusive use rights.




Sunday 12 September 2021



08.30 AM                      Departure in Hasselt at the parking behind CCHA
9:00 AM                         Departure in Genk at C-mine, parking 2
10.30 AM – 0.30 PM    City walk Spa (1 km)
0.30 – 1.30 PM              Lunch with sandwiches in the museum garden
1.30 – 2.30 PM              Visit of the Muséé de la ville d’eaux

2.30 PM                         Pick-up at the museum, busdrive to Geronstère
3.00 – 6.00 PM            Forrest- and City walk (4 km)
6.30- 8.00  PM            Dinner with pizza and wine at the museum
8.00 PM                        Travel back to Genk and Hasselt



Starting at 10.30am our morning programme will take us along a number of urban sites that will give you a feel of how the presence of the ‘bobelins’ influenced the development of the town. At the Pouhon Pierre-le-Grand we will taste its ferruginous water, while we discover the famous visitors to Spa on Antoine Fontaine’s painting Le livre d’or. From the Pouhon we will follow the river Wayai, which runs underneath the city, walking through the Promenade de sept heures, a tree-lined park dedicated to the bobelin’s after dinner strolls. It takes us to the garden of the royal villa, which currently houses the Musée de la ville d’eaux.


After a light lunch in the garden, we take a brief tour through the museum, highlighting the remarkable history of four centuries of exploitation of the sources, up unto the point of their industrial exploitation. We’ll also take the opportunity to introduce some of our historical protagonists, like Proudhon, Delhasse, Gambart…


After the visit the bus will drive us to the Source Geronstère, from where we descend along one of the famous 19th century promenades that were developed as walking became more and more part of Spa thermal cure. The Promenade Meyerbeer, named after the opera composer, has been artfully landscaped as a ‘natural’ set. The promenade connects the Source Geronstère with the Source Barisart, both waters we can taste. 


At the end of the walk we come to the former estate of Ernest Gambart, some of it in ruins, some of it redeveloped as apartments or hotel. After Gambart sold his gallery business in London he bought Chateau d’Alsa, a prestigious residence in Spa where he invited a social elite to sumptuous garden parties and showed his extensive painting collection on display in his ‘villa-museum’. Having carefully built up the dis-interested lifestyle of a maecenas, he was at the same time monopolizing the entire production of ‘his’ artists. Acquiring exclusive copyrights allowed him to distribute of etchings of their work worldwide, which made his fortune.


Via the staircases of Vieux Spa, walking by 19th century pleasure villas in eclectic styles, we will pass by the bottling plant of Spa Monopole, from where mineral waters are exported globally. Arriving back at the garden of the Musée de la ville d’eaux, drinks & dinner will be served.





You can make a reservation for this trip by sending an e-mail to or by phone: 089 65 50 88. The price for this trip is €65 per person (€55 for members), young members pay €45 per person. In this price lunch, dinner, drinks, artist fee and bus ride are included. Not a young member yet? No worries, your new membership is included in the price.


The reservation is completed after transferring the money to BE23 3350 0271 0891. A maximum of 25 people can take part in this trip. Before the start of the trip, registered participants will receive more practical information via e-mail.