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Hinterland Hub. From solitary residence to international networking

Wednesday, 3 April, 2019 - 19:30
Cinema RITCS
Antoine Dansaertstraat 70, 1000 Brussels
VUB Crosstalks
Evening Lecture

Since the beginning of the 19th Century, artists, philosophers, writers, scientists… have left the city to seek inspiration in the utopian landscape. The locus of contemplation and creativity versus the bustle of the city. Although it is rooted in a longer tradition, the solitary workplace may be best known in the form of Heidegger’s Hütte, his timber-shaggled cabin in the Black Forest in southern Germany. But while these retreats were once an endeavor of creative solitude, contemporary residencies have shifted to a more social and collaborative model. Today, academics and artists apply for international residencies less for isolation but more for social interaction, both with peers and with the local communities. An evolution which is stimulated by local and international funding opportunities.


PROGRAM (English spoken)

19:30: Intro

19:45: Film ‘Die Hütte’ by Sophie Nys

20:00: Keynote John Tresch (Warburg Institute): ‘Being Alone Together: The Informalities of Neo-Monasticism’

20:30: Pascale Hurtado (IMéRA Foundation) (presentation in French)

20:45: Discussion with Jan Ritsema (PAF/MASSIA), Amy Porteous (Bothy Project) and Haseeb Ahmed (artist), moderated by Alan Quireyns (AIR Antwerpen)



Event is free but please register on the website of Crosstalks.



Haseeb Ahmed is a research-based artist. Originally from the US, he now lives and works in Brussels. He produces objects, site-specific installations, films, and writes for various publications. Often working collaboratively Haseeb integrates methodologies from the hard sciences into his art production. Currently he works with the von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics (VKI) in Brussels for his project, The Wind Egg Trilogy. The project blends art and aeronautics, myth and technology, to create new narratives for the present. Ahmed has been a resident at the Jan van Eyck Academie in Maastricht (NL) and the Skowhegan School of Sculpture and painting (US) among others.

Pascale Hurtado is manager of the ‘Programme Art, Science, Société’ at the IMéRA-Institute for Advanced Study of Aix-Marseille University (FR). IMéRA receives researchers and artists of all disciplines under residence schemes of 3 to 12 months. It also accommodates a few multi-disciplinary teams with a collective project for short duration stays. Residents work on their own research projects in connection with Aix-Marseille teams and research centres.

The Belgian artist Sophie Nys brings together sculpture, drawing, photography, and video that examine with a wry sense of humour and play, themes of history, philosophy and architecture among others. She lives and works in Zurich and Brussels.

Amy Porteous is program coordinator at Bothy Project (Edinburgh, SCT). Bothy Project is a network of small-scale, off-grid art residency spaces in distinct and diverse locations around Scotland. It offers opportunities to stay, work and study in simple shelters designed to optimise exposure to their unique settings.

Dutch theatre maker Jan Ritsema works in a wide variety of contexts in many countries in Europe, predominantly in the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Germany. Ritsema explores the boundaries of various art forms. He is the director of PAF (PerformingArtsForum) in France and MASSIA in Estland, two places for the professional and not-yet professional practitioners and activists in the field of performing arts, visual art, literature, music, new media and internet, theory and cultural production, and scientists who seek to research and determine their own conditions of work.

John Tresch is Professor and Mellon Chair in History of Art, Science, and Folk Practice at the Warburg Institute. Trained in History and Philosophy of Science and in Anthropology, his work focuses on changing methods, instruments, and institutions in the sciences, arts, and media; connections among disciplines, cosmology, social order, and ritual; and shifting definitions of the rational and real.

Alan Quireyns is artistic director of AIR Antwerpen, curator and writer. He studied art history at the Ghent University and the Freie Universität Berlin and participated in De Appel Curatorial Program, Amsterdam in 2009-10. In his practice, he focuses on the relationship between artistic practices and everyday reality. Recent exhibitions include Null Island, AIR Antwerpen, 2019; The Living Room XL, BODEM, Antwerp, 2017; State of the City, basis e.v. Frankfurt am Main, 2016… He is the author of several books and texts, a.o. Sustainability is not enough (Onomatopee, Eindhoven, 2019); The Cabinet of Traces (APE, Ghent, 2018) and ‘The Temporary Resident, a Sequel…’ in: Contemporary Artist Residencies, Reclaiming Time and Space (ed. T. Elfving, I. Kokko and P. Gielen, Antennae Arts in Society, Valiz, Amsterdam, 2019).


This event is organised in the frame of the weKONEKT.brussels week (1-5 April).