Category Archives: BELGIUM

BRAFA: hommage to Julio Le Parc



BRAFA 2017 pays homage to an artist who is a major influence behind contemporary art, Julio Le Parc. Born in 1928, a pioneer of Op Art and Kinetic Art, a founder member of G.R.A.V. (Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel), winner of the international Grand Prize in Painting at the Venice 1966 Biennale, Julio Le Parc is a forthright, committed artist. His abundant work, in its many forms, imbued with a spirit of research and experimentation, explores the visual field, movement, light, and the relationship between the work and the viewer.

“We want to interest spectators, release them from their inhibitions, make them relax. We want to get them to participate. We want to put them in a situation which they themselves initiate and transform. We want them to be oriented towards interaction with other spectators. We want to develop a great capacity for perception and action in the spectator.” – Julio Le Parc.


Gen.Ruys head of CAR training mission


A Belgian national Brigadier General Herman Ruys has been appointed by the Council as Commander for the EU military training mission in the Central African Republic (EUTM RCA). He will take up his duties on 16 January 2017, taking over from Eric Hautecloque-Raysz.

The Council launched EUTM RCA on 16 July 2016. The mission contributes to the EU’s comprehensive approach and security sector reform in the country. Following up an EU military advisory mission (EUMAM RCA), EUTM RCA works towards modernised, effective, inclusive and democratically accountable Central African Armed Forces (FACA). It provides strategic advice to the Central African Republic’s Ministry of Defence and the general staff, as well as education to officers and non-commissioned officers, and training to the FACA. The mission is based in Bangui.

The nomination decision was taken by the Political and Security Committee.

(Soruce: Council, EEAS)

New Year 2017: Brussels fireworks


The city of Brussels is going to celebrate the New Year 2017 with public  fireworks, however

the use of fireworks by private persons is prohibited by the General police regulation.

Part 2 of the general police regulation of Brussels is about dangerous activities in public places. Article 33 states: it is forbidden in public spaces and publicly accessible places to conduct an activity that may affect the public safety or the safe and smooth passage, such as: … use of fireworks, except with the authorization of the competent authority, this prohibition also applies to the private property.

Fireworks such as skyrockets, Roman candles, firecrackers, Bengal lights, fountains, … used in this way, will be seized.

The police regulation recalls that this matter is regulated by the Ministerial Decree of 3 of February 2000 on safety about fireworks for private use.

Although the sale of fireworks is permitted in Belgium, a municipality like Brussels has the right to prohibit or restrict the use on its territory.

Last year  2016 public fireworks were cancelled following the terroristic attacks in Paris.

(Source: City of Brussels)

Bozar: Christmas music


23/12/2016 One evening, deep in the woods…
In this Christmas story, paper theatre, Chinese shadow play, and live drawing combine with the orchestra and a children’s choir to create a magical evening. The illustrator Kitty Crowther creates splendid drawings, live onstage, which are promptly brought to life by the Théâtre du Tilleul in shadow play. All accompanied by the loveliest Christmas music, in which the orchestra is joined by the Children’s Chorus of Opera Vlaanderen. Music by Bartók, Tchaikovsky, Musorgsky, Debussy, Janáček, and Prokofiev, among others.

Damian Iorio conductor – Kitty Crowther images – Kinderkoor Opera Vlaanderen

(Source:BOZAR Music)


Lugansky concert: eulogy

sam_5644Anyone talking about magnificent Nikolai Lugansky has no other option, but a genre of eulogy: Russian piano virtuoso continues to enchant public with his sophisticated interpretations of classics, especially Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff, included in his Brussels concert programme. The event became a highlight of “Russian Days” festival taking place during weekend 16-18 December in a prestigious Flagey concert hall.

Belgium art loves enjoyed pieces of composers, inspired by nature as ‘The Seasons’ by Tchaikovsky, as well as César Frank, Franz Schubert, and an amazing reading of Sergei Rachmaninoff Six moments musicaux Op.16 . The latter has a special place in Lugansky’s repertoire, as many consider him as the best contemporary performer of Rachmaninov’s oeuvre, achieving both technical perfection and emotional depth.
For those who could not attend Lugansky masterpiece performance to come in touch with his genius live, have an opportunity to acquire his new album of music inspirit by nature. The Brussels concert has been conceived as an “exclusive preview” for
this latest gift of Lugansky to the audiences.

Europa: the Lantern turned on


On Saturday 10 December 2016 during much awaited opening of European Council meeting centre Europa ‘The Lantern’ almost 2000 attendees enjoyed a guided tour.

The majestic project of the Belgium ‘Samyn and Parnters Architects’ took five years to erect, but the whole process was much longer, starting back in 2004, and included the renovation of the infrastructure of both metro and railroad stations of Schuman square, and an old historic site of Art Deco masterpiece of Swiss architect Michel Polak – the Résidence Palace.

The Samyn winning design for Europa Council meeting centre with a big ‘Lantern’ inside evoked a whirlwind of passions, and even some criticism of contemporary art lovers, especially of its facade, covered with four thousands of old, recycled oak widow-frames collected in demolition from all over Europe.
However today one can admit Philippe Samyn triumph as the elegance and sophistication of the finalized construction are breathtaking. As contemporary art paragon ‘The Lantern’ has already inspired the European Council to engage with the edifice adopting it’s image as a logo.
Hopefully, the aesthetic magic of the building will have an inspirational effect on the officials who will start exploiting the site in a few weeks.
From the beginning of 2017, the Europa building becomes the home of the two institutions representing the EU member states: the Council of the European Union and the European Council, where more than 6000 meetings are planned to take place annually.
Located at the heart of the European district, the Europa building combines a new part, an innovative lantern-shaped structure designed by the consortium of Samyn and Partners (Belgium), Studio Valle Progettazioni (Italy) and Buro Happold (UK), with a renovated section, block A of the Résidence Palace, a partly listed Art Deco complex designed by architect Michel Polak in 1922.
The entire project amounted to 321 million euro, and was funded by the EU budget.
The Europa was built in line with the principles of sustainable development. The building was designed  with modern systems to regulate lighting, humidity and temperature. It also includes green features such as solar panels or a rain water collection system.
The lantern uses LEDs as the most efficient and eco-friendly lighting system. Most of the light does not originate from the lantern itself but is projected onto it by lamps placed on the inner side of the façade. A white silkscreen printing pattern has been put on the lantern to maximize light reflection. The lantern will be on for a few hours in the evening and in the morning in winter, adjusted to sunset.
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