SIC and ARGOS – centre for Media and Art - initiate in partnership with The Royal Academy of Fine Arts – Gent (KASK) a series of lectures in 2014 that explore the relationship between contemporary art and cultural diversity in an urban context, with a specific focus on practice-based-research. In this lecture series we aim to revisit the ethnographic turn in contemporary art and focus on what this can imply for exploring cultural diversity in an urban context. We focus on criticism that is raised with regard to the ethnographic perspective in contemporary art (representation as delegation) as well as with issues that are at stake in overcoming the restriction to text-based models and turning to more material and sensual practices that can be found in the arts (representation as description).
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SoundImageCulture / SIC is a group of artist-anthropologists committed to artful storytelling through real human encounters that challenge documentary conventions, and opens up to sound and image installations. SIC offers a nine-month program to assist professional filmmakers, social scientists and artists in the realization of their personal project. The SIC involves a broad spectrum of theoretical perspectives and practical workshops so as to link formal and ethical questions during the production process as each creator develops their original, personal point of view.
Informed by developments in cultural theory, social sciences, and the visual arts (Laura Marks, Arjun Appadurai, Jean Rouch, Trinh Minh-ha en Jonas Mekas) we question the relation between artist, subject and viewer. The answer is not to eschew representation; rather, SIC proposes an ethical reflection on how ‘the other’ is presented in contemporary media: we believe this to be an urgency of the multicultural society we live in. The SIC involves nine months of artistic coaching through collective seminars, individual advising, group critiques, and inter-artist dialogue. For additional perspectives, we occasionally host visiting artists and critics.
An van. Dienderen
Master in the Audiovisual arts, Sint-Lukas, Brussels. Master and phd. Comparative Cultural Sciences, UGent. Visiting scholar UC Berkeley (California).
Filmmaker and essayist. Postdoctoral researcher at the Royal Academie of Fine Arts, Ghent.
Laurent Van Lancker
LVL both studied Film and Anthropology, and holds a PhD in Art. He lectures at filmschools (INSAS, IAD, LUCA) and universities (FU Berlin). His early works illuminate social and religious aspects. Followed by a series of short works called 'Experimental Ethnographies'. His long-feature film 'Surya', won international Awards, and had a theatrical release. He also made web-projects (diwans.org),video installations, and fiction films. His films draw on various modes: Experiential, Performative and Sensorial cinema.
Master in film directing INSAS, Brussels. Religious Science Laboratoire Audio-Visuel à l’Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes. Phd Cinématographie Sorbonne, Paris (promotor Jean Rouch). Studio lector INSAS. Writer of novels and theatre plays. Realised and produced a number of documentaries.
Eric is a coach and conducts the "Root Seminar".
Didier Volckaert is an Artist and Neo-Futurist. He created Optical Installations, made several award winning Documentaries and even a Fiction Feature Film. His main interests apart from life and Cinema are Japanese Pop Culture, Industrial Music and Art, Toys, Pirates and Piracy, Science Fiction and the Exotic.
Didier is a coach and conducts the "Active Experimental Workshop".
Master in Architecture from the University of Engineers at Lima-Peru, she has studied film production at the INSAS, directing actors at the Ron Burrus studio in Los Angeles. She has directed 3 feature films and ten documentaries and several radiophonic pieces. All have been shown in selected festivals and many have gotten several prices. She has been teaching film making and directing actors in Escuela de los Banos, Cuba, at the art school in Lausanne (ECAL) at the INSAS and IAD in Brussels.
Formed in editing at INSAS, Brussels.
Editor of short films, documentaries and fiction films.
Worked with Anne Térésa de Keersmaeker, Marie Jo Lafontaine, Thierry de Mey, Wim Vandekeybus etc.
Rudi coaches the editing.
Pieter Van Bogaert
Pieter Van Bogaert is a critic and curator. He made exhibitions for institutions as Kunsthal Bergen (Norway), Witte de With (Rotterdam) or Z33 (Hasselt). Recently his attention shifts from images to the imagination or, as he prefers to call it, to the imaginary practice. Some results of that shift were part of Blijven Kijken / Ce qui nous regarde / Dropouts, the exhibition and book he made in 2013 for Museum M in Leuven.
He started his musical career within the electronic group Front242 - their sources of inspiration range from architecture, graphic design to film. His work with the artist Kendell Geers explores the field of Contemporary Performance Art. Patrick Codenys is professor of "Sound Creation" at La Cambre - Brussels. Patrick is coach and conducts the workshop "Sound and Spatialization".
Els Opsomer is a Brussels based visual artist. Her artwork stems from a constantly expanding archive of urban images [archive building]. By analyzing our globalized reality, she exposes the challenging notion of personal integrity within it. Recent 16mm films depict the fate of modern utopias and their lost grandeur. She participated in international biennial exhibitions, is former resident of the Rijksakademie Amsterdam and lectures at Sint-Lukas Brussel.
Fairuz is a visual enthusiast on screen and on paper. She graduated as an experimental filmmaker and works as an editor and cinematographer on independent films in between genres and formats. She has an interest in well balanced steady high-def shots and user generated lo-fi beautiful trash as long as the poetics get through.She works on an irregular basis for the Brussels based production and distribution platform Auguste Orts.
Independent curator and film critic/film historian, research work mainly devoted to documentary cinema, experimental film and animation. Artistic co-director of the NodoDocFest of Trieste since 2008.Co-programmer for Doc's Kingdom - Seminário Internacional sobre Cinema Documental, 2013. Author on documentary and experimental cinema, animation and Italian cinema; editor of American Collage. Il cinema di Emile de Antonio and Grzegorz Królikiewicz. Un maestro del cinema polacco)
Wim Viaene is anthropologist and freelance consultant in the creative sector.
He has been the financial director of WALPURGIS - Contemporary music / theatre and the Kunstenfestival 0090 .
"Working at the intersection of Anthropology, contemporary art and cinema: Feels like coming home."
Since the end of 2012 he coordinates SIC.
Jeff Silva studied Cinema and Photography at Ithaca College and received a Master in Visual Art from Vermont College of Fine Arts (Montpelier). His films and installations have been exhibited at festivals, galleries and museums internationally. Currently, Jeff is a professor of film at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA) and is in production on three feature projects that explore the threshold between documentary, contemporary art and fiction film.
Olivier De Kegel
Olivier Dekegel lives and works in Brussels. After studying cinema at INSAS, he worked for several years as assistant, dramatist, light and sound designer for different modern dance and theatre companies. He has been involved in other filmmaker's works (Jonas Mekas, Thierry De Mey, Eric Pauwels, Boris Lehman...). Since 2003, he has been working as curator for the Belgian Royal Film Archive (CINEMATEK). For the moment, he is free-lance curator, and is responsible of the Age d'or Film Festival since 2014.
In SIC the artist is producer for his or her own work, and participants retain all copyrights to their project and materials.
SIC doesn’t offer studio space, recording equipment, or bursaries. Participants are expected to have or find their own means for filming, editing, and so on.
SIC operates at the intersection between art and anthropology. Contemporary anthropology addresses the need to represent the world of ‘the other’ without reducing it to Eurocentric, exclusively Western, or neo-colonial categories. Arising partly from this need, we have witnessed the ‘sensory turn of anthropology’ for which video, film, and sound are crucial to recording and expressing cultural experience.
The converse has been seen in what art critic Hal Foster calls ‘the ethnographic turn of contemporary arts.’ Myriad contemporary artists now work ethnographically and share content with the field of anthropology: e.g. nationalisms, migration, and expressions of identity. SIC coach An van.Dienderen explores this interaction by postdoctoral artistic research at the KASK art academy in Ghent.
We conceive the audiovisual as a performance in which the encounter will lead the process. The interaction, negotiation, or confrontation in the documentary encounter is the force that drives this artistic process.
SIC does not believe that representational media are mirrors that reflect reality, but rather systems through which different identities can be performed. We stimulate participants to understand cultural identity not in terms of authenticity, but as the way by which groups and individuals are imagined and articulated. For this reason, SIC believes that participating artists should use whichever media are appropriate for the project in question: film, video, photography, sound, etcetera.
The projects are accompanied by collective seminars, individual coaching and dialogue with a coach of the SIC team.
Text and Context Pieter Van Bogaert
This seminar reflects upon the relation between form and content through the critical analysis of texts (by a.o. Ariella Azoulay, Georges Didi-Huberman, Laura U. Marks, Kodwo Eshun) and contexts (by a.o. Elias Sanbar, Renzo Martens, Black Audio Film Collective). Topics include spectatorship, representation, resistance, exotism, voyeurism and more.
Root Seminar Eric Pauwels
The aim of this seminar is to critically examine key-works in documentary film history. Special attention is given to films made in first person, by film authors who reflect upon the position of the viewer and the distance to ‘the other’ (Rouch, Mekas, Gheerbrant, Van der Keuken, ...). The emphasis is on the ethical core of each encounter. The film is understood as a creation shared between filmmaker and the people filmed.
Senses– Narration – Representation Laurent Van Lancker
Collaborative, Narrative and Sensorial strategies are discussed using examples at the crossroad of art, anthropology and cinema (Martens, Kawase, Costa). This interdisciplinary seminar encourages the participants to experiment with sound and narrativity in an experiential and sensorial way.
Sound and Spatialization Patrick Codenys
This active workshop turns around sound, its technics and possibilities for narration. Site specificity and perception are accentuated and experimented with. Placing and a possible circulation of the public are at stake as well as rhythm, temporality, duration and orientation of a work.
Active Experimental Workshop Didier Volckaert
The seminar of Didier Volckaert brings us back to the basics of Cinema and the use of AudioVisual Media today. It reflects on the fact that the difference between Anthropology and Visual Anthropology (or Documentary in the broadest sense) is the use of a machine, a technological construction, as means of direct communication (filmmaker--other) and delayed output (filmmaker--other--public). It opens up this awareness for any use of AudioVisual Media in Art, Science and even entertainment. The seminar is a manifest against the dominant position of language in our Culture and a confrontation with the complexity of images. But it’s also the joy of exploration, experimentation and a renewed sense of freedom in our standardized media society. By re-tracing the origins of our machines in Pre-Cinema and Dead Media we try to understand their parameters and how we can use them to give sense and meaning, to communicate our point of view and to create Art. All of this brought to you in both a sensorial and active way in direct relationship to your own project.
Observation and Cityscapes ,_ around the heart Els Opsomer
In this playful workshop we focus on possibilities of participating and reading an urban landscape in relation to different moods. One introduction walk is organized. We visit different studios and films related to the participant’s interests are shown. The last day participants show a possible “valley of tears / tränenpalast” in Brussels and these spots will form a closure walk of the workshop. Questioning personal strategies and methods in creating artistic works is the main goal and hopefully sharing each others reading will enlarge every participants view.
Implicit Knowledge: On Seeing, Hearing and Believing in Cinema Jeff Silva
Cinema, particularly non-fiction film, is bound up by the lived experience, by the index, by the "actuality" of human existence. But cinema is also a powerful form of magic; it's a kinesthetic dance of movement, light, color and sonic vibrations that penetrates our bodies and can alter our perception to embed alternate forms of knowledge that can have a lasting impact on the viewer long after the ephemeral images on the screen have disappeared. How do we find conjoin meaning, memory and affect in a productive way? How might we create implicit cultural stories that engage the audience as collaborators in the construction process? How can ethnographically inflected works benefit from these ideas? We shall attempt to probe these questions by exploring the very essence of cinema, and how we see and hear.
Practices of Representation and Narration Laurent Van Lancker and Mary Jiménez
Through a series of exercises the participants will try out different modes of representations of reality, such as 'auto-ethnography', the performative and poetic approach. The exercises will be screened and discussed collectively.
Production Proposals Laurent Van Lancker
An introduction to the different channels that exist, mainly in Belgium, to find support for your project. And a short overview on how to write project proposal.
Editing sessions Fairuz
The SIC participants, faculty and a professional documentary editor come together to discuss the edits in progress, and to reflect upon the point of view, audiovisual communication, narration, and any problems that arise.
Effi Weiss and Amir Borenstein
House Warming (working title) is the story of a contemporary Goldilocks. Tired of abundance, hungry for some hunger, she leaves the comfort of her country and goes on a quest for lack.
One day she arrives in a place where she finds nothing but absence. The houses are empty, no traces of inhabitants. No chairs, no tables, no beds, not even walls. This site of absence is both metaphoric and concrete, It's the suburbian landscape of contemporary Albania, a country famous for its excessive emigration, where abandoned half-built houses are scattered throughout.In this project we would like to attempt an opposite immigration, from wealth to need, from the full to the empty,as a way to reflect both on our contemporary priviliged society and on "classical" immigration.It'll be a stroy of invasion (intrusion), of transgression and appropriation - actions we will be committing both as an immigrant and as an author. But it will be told from the view point of the invaded,an absent-present collective, a narrator of many voices.
"A Forgotten History of Britalians" - St. Peter’s Italian Church has been the hub of a series of very diverse flows of immigration that have moved from Italy to London from the 1800s till now. Specifically between the 1980s and the early 2000s it became a crucial reference for a large group of youngsters who had reached London seeking the assistance offered by the welfare state to those facing the diagnosis of AIDS. Many of these young men and women had an encounter with Father Carmelo Di Giovanni, parish priest of St.Peter’s, who represents the living archive of these twenty years that have risked to fall into oblivion. Through an ongoing conversation with Father Carmelo and a portrait of the spaces that saw this history unfold, I attempt to trace the dynamics that caused the community’s amnesia, the struggle of acceptance and the fear of contamination.
"The Sound Of Normalization" - My project concerns the nexus of public space, social performance and normalization in contemporary Italian football. The aim of my research is to trace the evolution of supporter's modes of listening and way of inhabiting the stadium in relation to the socio-economic changes of modern football. Via an examination of the chants and performative strategies shared by the group Brescia 1911, I’ll focus on the ways supporters modify their participation in the game and their relationship to the stadium in response to the dynamics of social control recently adopted in football grounds.
"Il Contratto: the silent sound track" - The remaking of a feature film made by migrants in 1953, Melbourne, left unfinished with a silent sound track. Using the figure of the migrant, as a poetical trope and social subject, my film art work will recollect, analogies and correspondences, between the silent images of the archived film and sound images from another place and time - like an abandoned house, reinhabited by a foreign, itinerant, provisional occupant.
Cities that have experienced social and economical decay seem to attract narratives that are not able to overcome these concerns. Starting from this assumption, I attempt to develop a different regard on the subject of modern failure in urban areas, a regard that doesn’t point to neutrality but lives in the desire of it.From Detroit to Charleroi, I try to express cities through installations that force on the everyday and are kept together by their linguistic approach: an exercise that revolves around something we together call the subject and contains what we may experience of it.
Sander Tas and Danja Cauwbergs
"and_counting" is a follow-up study of Project Bosch. In 2012 and 2013, we transformed materials that we found on the streets in Brussels, mostly illegal waste, into monumental artefacts, that then was put back on the streets. We did this without permission from the authorities or passersby, because we want to find out how a public space reacts to artistic intervention. In total we've put some 50 interventions in public space. They stood there without notice, name and signature, without defense or justification, surrendered to the street and its users or owners. Filmed by a webcam that recorded the movement around and the life span of the work. Over 5000 hours of footage was created, containing a massive amount of stories.
Lazara Rosell Albear
Osha" - Who wants to understand Cuba, needs to understand “Santeria” or “Regla de Osha”, the mysterious religion practised in secret by more than 70% of the Cuban population. Returning to the magical–realistic world of Santeria in my home country Cuba, revealing in an intimistic way, and, torn between religion and science, between docu and fiction. In this first part of the project I would like to integrate or merge different documentary styles or modes; interwearving the portrayal of this tradition of rules and ritualistic intitiations with social documentary, my personal experiences/interactions and audio-visual recreations, performance and poetry. I have been doing research and documenting for this project more than 7 years which allows the project to also portray de evolution of video recording or the documenting media's.
Miguel Peres dos Santos
This research project will explore some propositions of dissecting the so called western cultural identity by the construction of otherness. During the research period that this project alludes to, I will explore, reflect and research the political, social and cultural structures and processes of Dehumanisation that lead to the production of Otherness from a micro level (Brussels/ Belgium/ Northern Europe) but alluding to the meta level of concern: the Empire. The qualitative research methodology to be applied during this process may refer to Anthropological studies as well as other fields of Social Sciences, yet the main approach on the results is expected to reflect on the political realm of Aesthetics.
“The Last Super 8 mm Film“ / 100 minutes of personal cinema" - There is a personal urge to connect my present life with my past. 10 hours of digitised Super 8mm film archive are chosen to be the material. I have had a few Super 8mm cameras in my life. This medium has followed me through the time and I worked on it for thirty years in different film forms, as a web cinema and as a cinematographic database installation. The metadata of our private analogue archives often contain both chronological and subject indexing that reveal what the saved data actually is. Content of this visual narrative to come I see as a film literary originated from the identity which films and writes, from the soundtrack related to places and mental states and from the memory of unrecalled and the unforgettable that engraves the personal code and vocation.
"Oh, for some amusement!" takes the form of a multi-media installation that unfolds in space and time, operating as an experimental platform where major and minor “national” narratives —within the context of contemporary states-nations of the previous Ottoman Empire— come together and cross over through cinematic, theatrical and reading formats. By looking back at the moment of transition from the domination of the voice of one speaking for many in non-presentational, eastern participatory forms of spectacle (Karagoz & Ortaoyunu) to the domination of the image in representational, mass-media spectacle (first silent movies and first national cinemas —Turkish, Greek, Egyptian, etc—), the work examines how conditions of spectatorship affect questions of citizenship and social bonding today.
"1971, Sun Ra in Egypt" is a research- and visual arts project about the life and work of Sun Ra, the legendary jazz pioneer, bandleader, mystic and philosopher. The project focuses on Sun Ra’s concerts in Egypt in 1971 and consists of a series of exploratory works with public outcomes illustrating stages of work-in-progress. The resulting work will take the form of performances, jazz concerts, a publication, an exhibition at Medrar for Contemporary Art in Cairo and a video shot on location in Egypt in which Bogaert follows a local tour guide on a fictitious 'Sun Ra Pyramids Tour.'
L"Le Geste Cercle" is the third part of a project called "TRYPTIQUE (au niveau du sol )" which started in October 2012 together with my encounter with a man who decided 6 years ago to make “the outside” his territory, and live with no walls around him apart from a few and well chosen walls of flesh.
The 1st 2 chapters consist of a video and a book mixing writings and photographs.
The last chapter is a sound and video project currently being shot between Brussels, Tangeer, Fez and Casablanca, on a basis of uncertainty and random wandering as an attempt to follow the different tracks drawn through this man’s voice and body (from space to individuals)."I will teach you Martial Arts, your feet, they are your base, they are turned towards the outside" he said.We accompany each other, he defines a situation and guides my look, the eye has to adapt to the environment he embraces, the pupil dilates itself to be more aware. Create a form in which my gestures speak of his gestures and vice versa: a common battle.
I've met Dolo eight years ago, in Mali. He's born in Dogon country, but now he lives in Segou and works in Europe : Dolo is a sculptor, and a painter.I've discovered Dogon myths through Dolo's sculptures and paintings. It was the begginning of a journey. My journey from Europe to Mali, but also the journey of Dolo, from Dogon country to Europe. And a journey of friendship which grew up year after year.Together, we tell these myths to make them lively somewhere else.Dogon country becames a dream country, and myths are just some stories to play with.
Application SIC 2015
Interested candidates in SIC should submit their application anytime before November 2014. The SIC team will review the applications and invite finalists for interview in January 2015. Each year SIC is open to a maximum of 10 participants. SIC is especially interested in project proposals in which artistic development goes together with antropological influences.
SIC is open to people with experience in the arts and anthroplogy. The selection is based on an audiovisual project proposal (film, video installation, sound creation,…) submitted by the candidate which contains following paragraphs: What is the subject of your project and why do you want to make it? What’s the relation between the author and his or her subject/"other": what is the type of interaction between author and subject and how can this relation be specified? Is there a viewer involved, prefigured, abstract or concrete? What is your formal approach, what is the relation between your subject and the form you choose?
SIC is open for participants who speak Dutch, French and English. The SIC team speaks and understands these 3 languages. The modules and groupsessions are in English.
Send your application by email
The application should include:
- Project proposal
- Portfolio (condensed and relevant for the proposal)
- Images through youtube/vimeo/others
Deadline : End November 2014
Interviews : January 2015
Selection notification: January 2015
Start : April 2015
End : December 2015
Fee: 1000 euro
The subscription fee should be transfered to our bank account (IBAN BE61 0682 5170 4317 BIC GKCCBEBB) before the start of the first seminar in March. If necessary, participants can request a payment plan.
Foreign candidates must arrange the necessary papers to stay in Belgium: e.g. a student visa or an official residence permit.