What’s on: Belgium

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Photo credit: Exodus Travel.

What’s On in Belgium from theatre and design to the 100th anniversary of the Tour de France yellow jersey.

Brancusi: The flagship event of EUROPALIA ROMANIA is a prestigious exhibition devoted to Constantin Brancusi (1876- 1957), one of the most influential sculptors of the 20th century. This will be the first time a solo exhibition highlighting the work of this particularly versatile artist will take place in Brussels – the last retrospective was organised in Paris almost 25 years ago. Brancusi is a key figure in the history of art; he is considered to be a pioneer of modernism. The exhibition presents masterpieces by Brancusi from museums and private collections around the world, including Sleeping Muse, The Kiss and Leda. Several pieces will be showcased for the first time alongside works by Rodin under whom Brancusi briefly studied. 2 October 2019 — 12 January 2020. BOZAR. www.bozar.be

Macbeth Underworld: Just four years after the premiere of his Penthesilea, Pascal Dusapin has come up with a new opera, commissioned by La Monnaie. Together with his librettist Frédéric Boyer, he delves into the darkest regions of the human soul, this time via iconic symbol of evil in humankind: Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. The young French director Thomas Jolly who is familiar with Shakespeare’s world will direct, while conductor Alain Altinoglu does justice to the intense drama and the vocal and orchestral richness of the score. The result is a bloodstained gothic opera, in which the ill-fated couple is condemned to relive its owntragedy, haunting their memory and ours. “The story of Those Two continues to haunt our own time…” — Pascal Dusapin. 20 September – 5 October. La Monnaie. Tickets: €10 – €159 www.lamonnaie.be

What’s On – Brussels Design September 2018: Over the years, Brussels Design September has become the annual flagship event for design enthusiasts. For one month, the city hosts an array of over 100 unmissable cultural and commercial events offering a meeting platform between the public and a great number of Belgian and international designers. Brussels Design September will feature exhibitions, conferences, open houses, an Arts & Crafts tour, Commerce Design Brussels and Brussels Design Market. A multitude of dialogues between designers, architects and design lovers as well as the chance to discover urban trails between the many pop-up stores, shops, workshops, galleries and cultural spaces. This year’s edition will be marked by the latest trends in Belgian and international design and will be highlighted by the multi-disciplinary spirit of different influences, movements, crafts and professions of current day design. September. Various venues in Brussels. www.designseptember.be

Mario García Torres: Illusion Brought Me Here: Illusion Brought Me Here is the first major solo exhibition of Mario García Torres in Belgium. On this occasion, the Mexican artist presents his own abridged version of a retrospective: a new sound piece entitled Silence’s Wearing Thin Here, composed of voices and soundtracks from his earlier works. García Torres unravels untold or ‘minor’ histories, with a predilection for avant-garde art and music from the 1960s and 70s. He re-creates historical exhibitions and even ‘completes’ unfinished artworks, often blurring original and re-enactment, past and present. He engages in dialogues with enigmatic and radical figures that were mainly active before he was born, such as the Brussels artist Marcel Broodthaers and the Mexican-American composer Conlon Nancarrow. Until 18 August. Wiels Gallery, Brussels www.wiels.org/en

Exhibition 100 Years of the Yellow Jersey: The 100th anniversary of the Tour De France Yellow Jersey will be taking place as part of the Grand Départ of the Tour de France in Brussels. 2019 is a significant year for Belgian Tour de France anniversaries – it marks 50 years since the first victory of Eddy Merckx (1969), 100 years of the Yellow Jersey, worn 111 times by Eddy Merckx (still a record); and the last Grand Départ from Brussels took place in 1958. Until 14 July. Espace Wallonie, Brussels.

The Yellow Jersey exhibition is followed (and replaced) by an exhibition on the 1st UNESCO World Geopark in Belgium from 20 July in Espace Wallonie and runs all through the summer, until 15 September. The Global Geopark, it is located in Wallonia, in the Famenne-Ardenne region. It covers more than 900 km2 in the municipalities of Beauraing, Durbuy, Hotton, Marche-en-Famenne, Nassogne, Rochefort, Tellin and Wellin. This geopark has a tourism and scientific potential that is distinguished by treasures such as caves, soils rich in biodiversity, unique rocks and local initiatives promoting natural heritage.

What’s On – Events for the general public: 4 July between 15h15 and 15h30: Wallonia Belgium Tourism, a partner of the Walloon cycling team WANTY GOBERT, is organizing a signature session at the Espace Wallonie in Brussels. The session will precede the procession and the official presentation of all the teams on the Grand Place at 17h30 pm. 5 July – Reading of texts and poems from Tout Eddy est dit by Jeanne Rahier (1896-1981) on the epic Merckx. Rahier spent her entire life in Seraing. Widowed at the end of 1965, she found a form of comfort in the writing she did in Walloon and in French. In 1969, she became passionate about Eddy Merckx and followed his career. She was inspired to write many poems that are removed, touching and comical. Registration on info@wbtourisme.be. State your name and the number of people. This is a free event, but the number of places is limited.

L’Espace Wallonie de Bruxelles is located on Rue Marché aux Herbes, 25-27, 1000 Brussels, just two minutes from the Grand Place and Fan Park, Place de Brouckère. The Wallonia Boutique offers Tour de France and Grand Départ Brussels products. Nocturnes until 21h00 on 4 July, 19h00 on 5 and 6 July. www.expositions-wallonie.be