2020 wereldtournee in Antwerpen


(c) Vincent Delbroux

wereldtournee in Antwerpen (world tour in Antwerp)

For one year I will be performing in Antwerp.
I have been devising, making, collecting and packing 
small and fluid work for some time now, 
work that I can easily take with me
and, wherever, can show to someone.
 
Now I want to take these things 
on a journey of discovery, an adventure,
I want to meet people, bring my work to them, tell stories
then tell stories about the stories I told.

I suspect that the succession of cities
in which I usually show my work
can all be found in the city of Antwerp.
An exercise not to give in to the idea
that you have to be everywhere 
just because you can be anywhere.
Developing a gift for accidentally having
useful encounters and discoveries.
A license perhaps.
A constant movement between
studio and city, city, city and theater, theater and studio.

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ik ga een jaar lang spelen in Antwerpen.
ik ben al heel lang kleine en wendbare dingen
aan het bedenken,
maken, verzamelen en verpakken
dingen die ik makkelijk kan meenemen
en, waar dan ook, aan iemand tonen kan.

nu wil ik met die dingen op ontdekkingsreis gaan, op avontuur,
ik wil mensen ontmoeten, mijn werk naar hen toebrengen, verhalen vertellen.
vervolgens verhalen vertellen over de verhalen die ik vertelde.

ik heb het vermoeden dat de aaneenrijging van steden
waarin ik mijn werk doorgaans toon
allemaal terug te vinden zijn in deze stad.
een oefening om niet toe te geven aan de idee
dat je overal moet zijn enkel en alleen
omdat je overal kàn zijn.
het ontwikkelen van een gave voor het toevallig maken
van nuttige ontmoetingen en ontdekkingen.
een vrijbrief misschien.
een voortdurende beweging tussen
atelier en stad, stad, stad en theater, theater en atelier.

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“(…) in the middle of history, in the middle of progress, in the middle of the fight, we learn how we must fight.”
Rosa Luxemburg, Dialectic of Spontaneity and Organisation
“The other project was a scheme for abolishing all words whatsoever (…)
Since words are only names for things, it would be more convenient for all man to carry about them such things as were necessary to express a particular business they are to discourse on. For short conversations a man may carry implements in his pockets and under his arms enough to supply him.”
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels

 

 

2020 dingen

dingen

a collaboration with Guy Rombouts
for the exhibition
dingen/des choses/stuff
in the MAS Museum Antwerp

for one year already
we have been digging through
the collection of Jaap Kruithof
(about 10 000 items of … stuff)
to end up with
a rearrangement of the whole

on view from 1 June 2020 in the entrance and ‘Kijkdepot’ of the MAS Antwerp
more info here

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schalen pot pourri, flessen beplakt met sigarenbandjes,
stillevens uit macaroni, souvenirs uit Benidorm en Porto

het is een welgekomen oefenen
in kijken, in verplaatsen, scheiden en samenbrengen
waarom dit en niet dat en dat en niet dit

het is het enige wat we kunnen

uit de Collectie Kruithof spreekt een grote tederheid
het zorg dragen voor,
het koesteren van een teloorgegane relatie tot iets
herstellen, adopteren

wij plaatsen naast elkaar, rijgen aan draden,
hangen op, haken in
voorzien van een verhaal, gissingen, fictieve eigendomsakten
van wie was dit en dat niet
wij stellen ons voor waar het eens stond
waarom hij of zij het aanschafte, kreeg, terugbracht, vergat

zo stuiten wij op de toverdoos van Harry Potter
en even later op die van al zijn vrienden op Zweinstein
dan een zittend naakt met nagellak
de volgende dag het rijtje pepermolen papegaai pennenhouder peer

B.V., G.R. & J.K.

 

 

2020 ondertussen in Kapellen

ondertussen in Kapellen
(meanwhile in Kapellen)

new works in the ongoing Kapellen series
as shared on instagram by @verdonck_benjamin

 

 

2019 AREN (publication)

AREN
Benjamin Verdonck
2019

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Script of the recent theatre performance Aren

“Realising an idea also always means losing a hundred other ideas, renouncing countless ways in which the same idea could take shape. With Aren, a theatre text full of unrealised ideas for a stage performance, theatre maker and visual artist Benjamin Verdonck tries to outwit that necessity. The text can be regarded as a manual, a political pamphlet and an involuntary biography of the artist.”

Evelyne Coussens, review of the text edition of Aren
‘Open source aan subversieve ideeën’ (Open source of subversive ideas) in De Reactor

Published by Bebuquin & Toneelhuis
Languages  NL, ENG
ISBN 9789075175769
Price 10,00 euro

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On 10 January 2019, Aren premiered in the Bourla
Theatre in Antwerp. The title refers to the gleaner
who walks behind the harvesters and picks up the
remaining gleanings on the field. There are two parts
to the show. In the first, I present found objects in
constantly changing arrangements. In the second part,
I read a list of unrealized ideas to the audience. This
book comprises the script of the second part.

On 10 January 2019, a large group of school kids
gathered in Brussels for the first time to express their
concern about the inevitable changes to the climate.
This event made my story of an unrealized idea for a
workshop with children rather special that evening. As
I write this now, the elections are behind us. Yet those
who were elected still show no sign that limiting this
catastrophe is in any way a priority.

Benjamin Verdonck, June 2019

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On sale in the Toneelhuis bookshop
or at an upcoming Aren performance

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More publications:
Kalender09 (2014)
werk/some work (2008)
even i must understand it (2017)
kapellen (2019)

kapellen (edition)

kapellen
Benjamin Verdonck
2019__

box of 24 small works by Benjamin Verdonck
200 copy limited edition
the first 100 copies are signed and numbered by the artist

Published by Toneelhuis
Languages  NL
ISBN 9789076734347
Price 25.00 euro

On sale at the ticket office of Toneelhuis (Orgelstraat 7, Antwerp)
and at Copyright Bookshop Antwerp and Ghent (no online purchase of the edition as it is too fragile for post delivery)
Online purchases via the Toneelhuis bookshop

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“In the summer of 2016, four families, including mine, moved out of Antwerp to the rural town of Kapellen. This move took away the daily stimulus I used to get from what I came across in the city streets. Now our living room is my studio. This edition is a compilation of small works, taken from a series that I started making since then and reveals my attempt to shift focus from the streets towards what is going on around my worktable.”

Part of this Kapellen series was seen in AREN, my show which premiered on 10 January 2019 at the Bourla Theatre in Antwerp. The title refers to the gleaner who walks behind the harvesters and picks up the remaining gleanings on the field. There are two parts to the show. In the first, I present found objects in constantly changing arrangements. In the second part, I read a list of unrealized ideas to the audience.
This edition presents a selection from one of the collections I used in the first part. The script of AREN was published by Bebuquin in the Toneelhuis series.

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First on sale on 19 October at Antwerp Academy Art Book Fair
and on 25 & 26 October in V36 for the occasion of vier keer verdonck

 

See also:

AREN

On sale in the Toneelhuis bookshop
or at an upcoming Aren performance

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More publications:
Kalender09 (2014)
werk/some work (2008)
even i must understand it (2017)
AREN (2019)

2019 Aren

Aren

“Why create a work of art when dreaming about it is so much sweeter?”
(Il Decameron, Pasolini)

– Aren – ‘gleaning’; which also means ‘harvest’ and ‘yield’

A gleaner walks behind the harvesters and picks up the gleanings that are still lying on the field. When creating new work, more than one idea remains unused.

A tunnel from the National Bank to the florist’s across the street,
a boat on the rooftop of a building,
a collection of rat traps that don’t work,
and one of leaky footballs,
a theatre piece that never starts in which you die a hundred times,
a fox made of cardboard.

Could I put these things next to each other such that something does happen?
Something I couldn’t have come up with myself?

tunnel football fox
fox football tunnel
fox tunnel fox football fox fox

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Upcoming dates:

12.11.2020 — 20:00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen Première
13.11.2020 — 20:00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
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More info: www.toneelhuis.be