Happy New Year! Utopia Parkway’s ‘best of 2012’-list! Dancing curtains and circling planets!

Sol LeWitt (M Museum, Leuven; detail)

Happy New Year! And a sincere thank you for following Utopia Parkway. To start things off in a positive way: yes, your beloved Belgian art traveller has made a resolution to drop posts on this blog more often than last year. But first: a slightly alternative best of-list for 2012, featuring dancing curtains, open windows and the desert wind. 

 

'Nothing's For Something' (Heine Avdal/Yukiko Shinozaki; photo Kurt Van der Elst)

Most magical moment in a theater (1): a choreography for grey curtains (and no dancers) on Der schönen blauen Donau, at the beginning of Nothing’s for something (Heine Avdal & Yukiko Shinozaki)

Most magical moment in a theater (2): radio-controlled balloons floating over the audience at the end of Nothing’s for something (Heine Avdal & Yukiko Shinozaki)

Chilliest moment in a theater: watching Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s Cesena at 5AM in open air, under a blanket while the rain was pouring down, at the Abbaye Villers-La-Ville

'Built To Last' (Meg Stuart/Damaged Goods; photo: Chris Van der Burght)

Simplest scene that I would have gladly watched for hours in a theater: Anja Müller trying to avoid the circling planets of the solar system in Meg Stuart‘s Built to last

Best sound (as in: just thinking about it conjures up the entire theater performance in my mind): the desert wind, omnipresent in Fabrice Murgia’s Ghost road

Craziest idea for a decor: bringing a magazine shop to a theater (Tristero, for Reset)

'It's going to get worse' (Lisbeth Gruwez/Voetvolk; photo: Luc Depreitere)Sharpest dressed man (or was that: woman?) on stage: Lisbeth Gruwez, for It’s going to get worse and worse and worse, my friend (no wonder: styling Veronique Branquinho)

Performance that got everybody talking afterwards: Jérôme Bel & Theater Hora’s wonderful Disabled theater (Was he or wasn’t he exploiting those mentally disabled actors?)

Exhibition that made all those silent journalists finally talk to each other at a press visit: Leigh Ledare, at Wiels (Brussels).  (Was he or was he not crossing the line?)

Jimmie Durham (M HKA, Antwerp)

Exhibition that made me laugh, wonder and think: Jimmie Durham, at MHKA, Antwerp

Best disappearing act / exhibition no one noticed: Guillaume Bijl transforming Etablissement d’En Face (Brussels) into a hair shop. (People actually entered the shop, asking for the products on display)

Jacob Kassay (Xavier Hufkens, Brussels)

Most radical gallery show: Jacob Kassay, stripping Xavier Hufkens (Brussels) and opening  the windows

Work I was familiar with that nevertheless blew me off my feet again (1): Sol LeWitt ‘s wall-drawings at M Museum (Leuven)

 'Invisible Beauty' (Berlinde De Bruyckere at De Pont, Tilburg)

Work I was familiar with that nevertheless blew me off my feet again (2)Berlinde De Bruyckere ‘s Invisible beauty, that helpless corpse, hanging in that small booth, at De Pont, Tilburg

Most surreal moment in an exhibition: renowned art critic Robert Hughes praising (on video) a Belgian artist everyone has forgotten (Jan Yoors) in a museum no one knows about (FelixArt Museum, Drogenbos)

Best book I should have told you about: Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s A choreographer’s score. The Belgian choreographer reflecting (in a book and on 4 dvd’s) on four of her early works. History in motion.

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