Downtown Borgerhout

The group exhibition Downtown Borgerhout took place from 2 October till 26 October in 't Werkhuys in Antwerp. The participating artists are: Yoko Enoki, Oona Vanderleenen, Faryda Moumouh, Kato Six, Koyuki Kazahaya, Chiara Monteverde and me, Eline De Clercq. You can read more about the exhibition here, or have a look at the exhibition in the photos. In the last photo you can see the addition of the Art Club Borgerhout, including the launch of a local youth centre for visual arts.

Downtown Borgerhout is the second part of a three-part series Downtown Hoboken, Downtown Borgerhout and Downtown Kiel. The series kicked off with an 'open call' in the Permeke Library where visitors were allowed to pose for a portrait in order to give 'the public' a different face. The work 'Downtown Hoboken' emerged from this and is a series of 53 portraits, which show the face of the visitors. Under the same name, the exhibition opened last year where this work was shown for the first time. During the exhibition there were lectures on literature, there were poetry readings and 'spoken word' to make it a participatory event.


This year I invited seven artists from Tokyo, Brussels and Antwerp; we created the exhibition Downtown Borgerhout, each showing our individual work. We shifted the center of Antwerp from the old part of town to the periphery. Ways of participation were again sought by establishing the Art Club Borgerhout in collaboration with Fameus and Culture Network Borgerhout, and under the roof of 't Werkhuys. The Art Club Borgerhout adds a piece of the identity of Borgerhout to the exhibition, and will continue to work on a connection between young people and visual arts during the month of October.


During this exhibition, free workshops invited the public to join in the creative process. The workshops are taught by the artists and let visitors involve in this exhibition. Because this exhibition was co-formed during the lockdown, a participatory approach was chosen whereby young people are invited to take part in visual arts and the artists receive proper remuneration for the work they do. More diversity in the arts and a fair payment for the artists are the basis for this project.


The workshops were given by Zahra Eljadid, Nyiragasigwa Hens, Tramaine de Senna, Chiara Monteverde, Kato Six, Katrin Kamrau and Koyuki Kazahaya.

photo credit © Eline De Clercq