OCTOBER 2019

9 > 13 Oct: The Soft Layer I Dream City festival, Tunis (TN)

DECEMBER 2019

6 Dec > 15 Mar: The Neverending Park I Museum Hof van Busleyden & ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen (BE)

JANUARY 2020

6 Dec > 15 Mar: The Neverending Park I Museum Hof van Busleyden & ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen (BE)

FEBRUARY 2020

6 Dec > 15 Mar: The Neverending Park I Museum Hof van Busleyden & ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen (BE)

MARCH 2020

6 Dec > 15 Mar: The Neverending Park I Museum Hof van Busleyden & ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen (BE)

APRIL 2020

23, 24 Apr: The Soft Layer I Kunstencentrum Vooruit, Ghent (BE)

Decoratelier is an ongoing and constantly evolving project by autonomous artist-in-residence Jozef Wouters. From an old factory building located at Manchesterstraat 17/19 in Brussels, the artist builds on INFINI 1-15, a performance that was presented in the main auditorium of the Brussels City Theatre (KVS) during Kunstenfestivaldesarts 2016. Decoratelier Jozef Wouters functions as an accessible workplace for artists, where there is room for both set designers and audiences, as well as cross-disciplinary collaborations and social experiment.

"Decoratelier is a space that accommodates the various forms of collaboration and labour that are inherent in my work. Space is tested, conversations take place in wood, iron and cardboard. It is a permanent place within the constructional quest for constantly changing spaces in which art, thought and artisans meet." (Jozef Wouters)

In 2019-20, Decoratelier continues to work with various artists, old and new partners, and spontaneous encounters; in and outside the walls of the Decoratelier. Read all about what the new season brings right here.

> More info about Jozef Wouters

Underneath Which Rivers Flow

Globe Aroma & Decoratelier Jozef Wouters

“One day, a large banner suddenly appeared on the facade of the Decoratelier, showing a virtual vision of what the neighbourhood might look like in the future. The atelier and its surroundings had been replaced by a large park. That same day, I met a group of people from Globe Aroma and we decided to dig a hole towards this future park that, right now, is still an old factory. In the enormous void we taught each other to build out loud: a form of construction in which there is no difference between speaking, dreaming and building. Gradually an alternative park took shape, a park where memories and imagination intermingle, a secret garden filled with shadows and a jumble of grey zones. As yet I understand little of it, but it seems to be a place where people can decide for themselves whether or not to be visible or invisible, and this in the heart of the city.” (Jozef Wouters)

For a year, Decoratelier Jozef Wouters worked with Open Arts House Globe Aroma on Underneath Which Rivers Flow. A group of women and men – builders, poets and dreamers – met weekly in the Decoratelier in Molenbeek. Together, they built stories, a secret garden full of wormholes to unsuspected worlds.

Read a text by Guy Gypens about the broader context of the project here.

Watch an interview with Bushra Lamsyeh and Jozef Wouters here below.

CREDITS

Underneath Which Rivers Flow

A project by Globe Aroma & Decoratelier Jozef Wouters

Building Poets Barry Ahmad Talib, Ali Alkrizi, Mimouna Amri, Mbarek Bouallaga, Zohir Boumelha, Sekou Coumbassa, Chantal Gyselinx, Idris Hassan Hardi, George Khuroshvili, Bushra Lamsyeh, Soumaya Mahroug, Shilemeza Prins, Randy Renders, Marie-Ange Sibi, Ifrah Yusuf Magan, Tahar Zadam

Artistic direction Jozef Wouters
Artistic collaborator Jeroen Peeters
Dramaturgy Vladimir Miller
Decoratelier Menno Vandevelde (technical director), Lukas Geerens, Jan Rymenants, Willem Rys, Koen Schetske, Vic Van den Bossche, Siemen Van Gaubergen, Casper van Overschee
Film Robbrecht Desmet
Light Michiel Soete
Sound in collaboration with Vincent Malstaf
Production management Penelope Desloovere, Brecht Theunis, Camille Thiry, Ewoud Vermote

Production Damaged Goods, Globe Aroma
Co-production Kaaitheater, Netwerk Aalst

Special thanks to Saïd Amrawu, Alex Cepile

Thanks to Thomas Collier, Wannes Cré, Philip Delbecque, Pieter Dumoulin, Marlies Jacques, Sirine Jen, Lila John, Sanae Khamlichi, Ferre Marnef, Hana Miletic, Kristof Vande Walle (M – Museum Leuven), Sarah Vanhee, Nathanael Van Hoecke, De Lork vzw, Gemeente Molenbeek, L’Escaut Architectures, WijkAntenne de Quartier

Part of the two-year collaboration between Netwerk Aalst and Jozef Wouters, within the framework of The Unreliable Protagonist-programme (2017-2019). For Netwerk Aalst, this project was managed by Els Silvrants-Barclay.

© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Illias Teirlinck
© Pieter Dumoulin
© Pieter Dumoulin
The Soft Layer

Decoratelier Jozef Wouters & Vladimir Miller

In response to an invitation from Dream City – the Tunis Biennial for Contemporary Art – Jozef Wouters took residence in the historic building of Dar Bairam Turki and asked the residents of the Medina which visions they had for it. One thing almost everyone seemed to agree on: the future of the Medina and of Dar Bairam Turki is a restored version of itself. But which version of the past should we select to be the new future and how do we make that choice? If the only imaginable future is the past, then where are we now?

Jozef Wouters and artistic collaborator Vladimir Miller gather these conflicting ideas around restoration in a process that adds layers to this building instead of peeling them off. Together with the Tunisian artists Amira Chebli, Hichem Chebli and Jihed Khmiri this ephemeral Soft Layer will be performed in order to temporarily restore the collective histories, imaginations and visions that make up the nostalgic territory of architecture. If we keep adding layers, stories, copies and visions to it, will the courtyard one night expand and be able to hold the many versions of itself without bursting?

After its premiere in Tunis, the group will bring this ritual to other places, beginning with Vooruit in Ghent.

made with & performed by (nightshift) Fatma Ben Saïdane, Amira Chebli, Hichem Chebli, Vladimir Miller, Jozef Wouters (dayshift) Ahmed Ayari, Kais Ben Rejeb, Valérie Bikok, Manoubi Cherif, Emna Hamdi, Laila Missaoui I costumes Lila John I sound in collaboration with Milan Warmoeskerken I technical director Menno Vandevelde I technical assistants Aziz Romdhani & Syrine Chekili I production team Aisha Zaied, Selma Ben Gaied & Insaf Mejri I thanks to Jeroen Peeters I production Dream City Tunis, L’Art Rue, Damaged Goods I coproduction Arts Centre Vooruit

© Syrine Chekili
The Unbuilt School of Architecture

Decoratelier Jozef Wouters

The Unbuilt School of Architecture is a school without a building. It only exists temporarily and needs to be built time and time again by a group that comes together to work on a specific topic. The school was established for the first time within the context of the Free School-program of Kunstenfestivaldesarts. Jozef Wouters, the team of Decoratelier, and Brussels based art/party collective Leaving Living Dakota invited a small group of participants to discuss, design, construct and host a nightclub. What night-space do our collective desires invent? Or should we choose to focus on our conflicting ones? How visible or invisible do we want to be? What other forms of public space can we come up with? Can architecture keep a secret?

CREDITS

In collaboration with: Leaving Living Dakota (Célia Wu-tangu and Golce Dabanna) and Steven Jouwersma

Participants: Irène Bouzin, Melissa Jin, Maru Kay, Gülce Padem, Clemence Marin, Vesara Molla, Maria Muehombo, Benjamin Munix, Maria Mushtriev, Charlotte Nagel, Isabelle N’diaye, Joris Perdieus, Mariagiulia Serantoni, Marion Stucky, Erik van de Wijdeven, Elina Valdmane, Lizzy Vandierendonck, Ode Windels

Coproduction: Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Decoratelier Jozef Wouters, Damaged Goods
Supported by: SAU/MSI urban development corporation

© Laura Van Severen
© Laura Van Severen
© Laura Van Severen
Building Out Loud

Building Out Loud is a form of improvised construction in which sketching, making, expressing and speaking take place simultaneously. More than a name for a specific project, it is a common theme that includes various projects and spaces.

© Ewoud Vermote
Space for 'LILA & JOHN: A Fashion Performance.' October 2018 in Decoratelier.
© Ewoud Vermote
Space for ‘LILA & JOHN: A Fashion Performance.‘ October 2018 in Decoratelier.
© Ewoud Vermote
Space for ‘LILA & JOHN: A Fashion Performance.‘ October 2018 in Decoratelier.
© Ewoud Vermote
Space for ‘LILA & JOHN: A Fashion Performance.‘ October 2018 in Decoratelier.
© Jozef Wouters
Space for ‘Momentum #3‘ of d e t h e a t e r m a k e r. October 2018 on the roof of deSingel, Antwerp (BE).
© Leontien Allemeersch
Space for ‘Momentum #3‘ of d e t h e a t e r m a k e r. October 2018 on the roof of deSingel, Antwerp (BE).
© Elsemieke Scholte
Space for ‘Momentum #3‘ of d e t h e a t e r m a k e r. October 2018 on the roof of deSingel, Antwerp (BE).
Infini

Decoratelier Jozef Wouters

Infini is an ongoing research project by Decoratelier Jozef Wouters. It is driven by the desire to question the classical theatre machine and its perspectival sets. The project originated in 2016, when Wouters produced the performance Infini 1-15 for the Royal Flemish Theatre in Brussels (KVS). Working with the team then associated with his Decoratelier, the key question he addressed was: “what spaces should we show in the theatre today?” Fourteen artists entered into a dialogue with Jozef Wouters and the Decoratelier, and each conversation yielded an infini: a unique interpretation of the painted backdrops that are lowered with pulleys, as a horizon for the imagination.

Today, Infini 1-15 is not so much a performance as a growing collection of sets, each one of which – and sometimes independently of the others – tells its own story. For example, Infini #5 by the Palestinian playwright and director Rimah Jabr will be shown in Ghent, Ramallah, Lisbon and Ostend in 2018.

The Infini 1-15 publication is also an offshoot of the Infini project; a translation of scenographic space and image into word and layout. The book was presented in September 2017 at Wouters’ Decoratelier, when all fifteen infinis were reassembled for the occasion.

© Phile Deprez
Infini 1-15
© Phile Deprez
Infini 1-15
© Jozef Wouters
Creation 'Infini #5' in Decoratelier
Publication 'Infini 1-15&lsquo
© Laura Van Severen
Book presentation 'Infini 1-15&lsquo
© Laura Van Severen
Book presentation 'Infini 1-15&lsquo
Infini #5

Rimah Jabr & Decoratelier Jozef Wouters

Dear Rimah,

Because we might not have the time to talk (about art) tonight, I have decided to write you a letter. I’d like to ask you the questions that came to mind when thinking about tunnels and endlessness – the two topics that I remember from our brief conversation at the Decoratelier in Brussels. I’m curious as to why the space of a tunnel is important to you. What is it about tunnels that turns them into an environment for a story, like the one you told me, about people being stuck?

Jozef Wouters, Nablus, August 14

Scenographer Jozef Wouters wrote a letter to the Palestinian playwright and director Rimah Jabr. What kind of space or landscape would she like to be represented on stage? Which space should Decoratelier construct for her? Their correspondence began with pictures of the tunnels under the Gaza wall. Later, these images were transformed into wood, canvas and paint. The final set, in combination with a letter from Rimah Jabr, results in a sharp and imaginative observation of a situation that can only be expressed in its absurdity.

Infini #5 was created as part of Infini 1-15, the Decoratelier performance in which fifteen artists considered which space or landscape they would like to see represented in a theatre today.

text Rimah Jabr / scenography Jozef Wouters / dramaturgy Jeroen Peeters / light Ken Hioco / technical direction Menno Vandevelde / production manager Celine van der Poel / decoratelier Ryma Merghoub, Stijn Maes, Tim Vanhentenryck / production Decoratelier Jozef Wouters, Damaged Goods (Brussels) / thanks to Dries Douibi, Bruno Forment, Ine Craenhals, Chris Keulemans and KVS (Brussels)

© Jozef Wouters
© Jozef Wouters
© Jozef Wouters
Scenographies

Next to creating own work and projects, Decoratelier Jozef Wouters creates scenographies in collaboration with various artists and makers.

© Laura Van Severen
Scenography in collaboration with Florian Fischer for the piece 'To Name Herstory' (2018). Out of their conversations emerged an intuitive space, playing with reality and fiction.
© Laura Van Severen
Scenography in collaboration with Radouan Mriziga for the piece '8' (2018). Together they transformed Decoratelier into a space that operates as a machine with two dancers at the heart.
© Tine Declerck
Scenography in collaboration with Christophe Meierhans for the piece ‘Trials of Money‘ (2018).
© Laura Van Severen
Scenography in collaboration with BOG. for the piece ‘KID.‘ (2017)

© Damaged Goods — info@damagedgoods.be — +32 (0)2.513.25.40

Underneath Which Rivers Flow
The Soft Layer
The Unbuilt School of Architecture
Building Out Loud
Infini
Infini #5
Scenographies