Jozef Wouters is independent artist-in-residence with Damaged Goods. He initiates projects, using his Decoratelier in Molenbeek (Brussels) as a base.
From this old factory building, the artist builds on INFINI 1-15, the Decoratelier performance which saw him take over 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 spatial experiment.
"Decoratelier is a space that accommodates the various forms of collaboration and labour that is 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
The first project that was shaped within these walls was the site-specific creation Atelier III (2017), in collaboration with Meg Stuart/Damaged Goods and dramaturge Jeroen Peeters, as part of Performatik 17 (Kaaitheater). In 2018-19, Decoratelier worked with Open Arts House Globe Aroma on Underneath Which Rivers Flow, a project that premiered during Performatik19 and was revived during Kunstenfestivaldesarts 2019 and as part of its selection for Het Theaterfestival. Later that year, the production The Soft Layer premiered at Dream City festival in Tunis. In 2019 Jozef Wouters, Decoratelier and co-founder of Decoratelier Menno Vandevelde were awarded the Flemish Culture Award (Ultima) in the category of performing arts.
Jozef Wouters (1986, B) has been active as a stage designer, theatre maker and visual artist since 2007. Wouters developed his career in the performing arts at fABULEUS, Scheld’Apen d e t h e a t h e r m a k e r and a.pass, before establishing his own structure for the production of his work – Decoratelier.
As a scenographer, Jozef Wouters has worked with, amongst others, Meg Stuart/Damaged Goods, Thomas Bellinck, Benny Claessens and Michiel Vandevelde.
Wouters’ own work often relates to a specific location, such as All problems can never be solved (2012) for the Cité Modèle in Laeken and the Zoological Institute for Recently Extinct Species (2013) for the Museum of Natural Sciences in Brussels. During Kunstenfestivaldesarts 2016 he took over the main auditorium at the Brussels City Theatre (KVS) with his Decoratelier performance, INFINI 1-15. In 2017 he worked on the site-specific creations Atelier III and Projecting [Space[, in collaboration with Meg Stuart/Damaged Goods and dramaturge Jeroen Peeters. Underneath Which Rivers Flow, a collaboration with Open Arts House Globe Aroma, premiered during Performatik19 and was later selected for Kunstenfestivaldesarts and Theaterfestival. Wouters’ most recent creation, The Soft Layer (2019), was created in collaboration with Vladimir Miller and premiered at Dream City Festival in Tunis.
Since 2017, Jozef Wouters is an integral part of Damaged Goods, the Brussels-based company of choreographer Meg Stuart. Within this context he produces theatre productions and initiates several projects, using his Decoratelier, located in an old factory building, as a base. In 2023 Wouters makes a creation with Toneelhuis in Antwerp. He is artist in residence at Kunstencentrum VIERNULVIER in Ghent (BE) 2023-2027. In 2023-2024 he holds a fellowship with PACT Zollverein, through which he researches how forest management can be a model for our dealings with public space in an urban context.