Cultural Compass: Author interview, Mu.ZEE collection, Fashion Moves and more

Exhibitions, music, architecture, books, festivals… this is Belga English's pick of cultural activities in Flanders and Brussels, published every Sunday.

In Antwerp’s South district, Chilean author Alejandro Zambra will give a talk about his book Childish Literature in English on 12 June at bookstore and café Cronopio. The store has a range of books in English, French, Dutch, Spanish and French with several author interviews during the year.

Zambra wrote his latest book “under the influence” of fatherhood. He explores the theme of childhood or how the birth and growth of a child not only changes the present and the future but also shakes up our ideas about the past. A combination of fiction, autobiography, essays and poetry, teh book looks at the lives of families and their stories through a wide variety of topics. Screen time, personal libraries, fishing and psychedelics are just a few of the subjects in Zambra’s insight into the ways parents and children challenge, enrich and entertain each other.

Marie Schoups, a doctoral researcher at the Department of Literature at Ghent University will interview Zambra. Places are limited, reserve by email:


Ostende’s Mu.ZEE has a staggering lineup of artists for the museum’s Full House Collection. Eighty iconic names, from James Ensor and Paul Delvaux to Ann Veronica Janssens and Luc Tuymans, will line the walls until the start of 2025 when the museum closes for three years of renovation work.

The museum aims to put this eclectic mix of artworks into conversation with each other, foregoing the usual chronology found in displays, and instead following a thematic approach. Artworks from different periods and styles will hang side by side. For example, De Grote Marine by Ensor painted in 1885 shares space with creations by visual artist Janssens. With 130 years between their pieces, the focus on light and colour is the thread connecting their work.

Make a note of 29 June, when The Longest Day will take place in cooperation with KAAP. From sunrise until sunset, KAAP, Muz.ZEE and public spaces between will host a day full of performances.


Fashion Moves, the Centre for Fashion and Design, presents a fascinating exhibition on the multifaceted relationship between fashion and dance. Until 31 August, visitors can experience the colliding worlds of movement and clothing at MAD Brussels. Designs for the stage, the latest fashion trends on social media and creations inspired by clubs and nightlife tell the story in this exhibition.

Visitors can see how clothing and costumes specifically for on stage require a different approach than designs for the catwalk. “It should be more dramatic and fluid, as well as highlight the dancers' movements,” the curators say. The exhibition also addresses the evolution of sportswear, which became popular thanks to hip-hop culture. It follows the genre’s arc to its current presence on the catwalks of luxury fashion houses. Lastly, it looks at the fashion trends of 2024, inspired by the rapid evolutions on platforms such as TikTok, that symbolise a radical and daring generation.


The Queen Elisabeth Competition crowned its winners last week, but the performances are not over yet. On 10 June, Bozar will host the laureate concert featuring the violinists who placed fourth, fifth and sixth in the 2024 violin competition. Kevin Zhu and Julian Rhee from the US will join Japanese laureate Minami Yoshida with a programme of concertos by Saint-Saëns, Bruch and Shostakovich under the baton of Antwerp Symphony Orchestra’s Tung-Chieh Chuang.

The top three prizewinners, Dmytro Udovychenko from Ukraine and Joshua Brown and Elli Choi from the US, have the honour of concluding this year’s competition in the closing concert on 12 June. The three young violinists will celebrate their victories and provide a closing ceremony with a programme of concertos by Sibelius, Mendelssohn and Brahms. Nuno Coelho, the director of Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège, conducts the final concert.

Additional cultural coverage from Belga this week includes: Ukrainian Dmytro Udovychenko wins Queen Elisabeth Competition for violin.

​​Ongoing events

Old Paper? Photo Paper from the Gevaert Archive​
5,000 cultural objects from the DR Congo, MAS​

Josef and Anni Albers​
Afrika Film Festival ​ ​
Jean-Michel Folon, A Journey in Brussels ​​
Jef Verheyen: Window on Infinity KMSKA ​​

Rodin: A Modern Renaissance




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