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brainbox

/1/ H-ART N°14 (December 2006), Inge Braeckman:
'Over the past three years now, exhibition space Croxhapox has been presenting expeerimental but interesting art under the guise of a series of projects called 'Brainbox'. This fall, inspirator and artistic director Hans van Heirseele again invited some twenty-odd artists of very different plumage to create an ongoing show in groups of three and in seven stages. The collaboration doesn't have to result in a finished product - contrary to what is currently common practice. It has to be, though, a temporary end product and starting point for the next group of three artists, who are responding to what came before. Art should always be a reply to what predecessors did. That is a maxime the Spanish-American author Jorge Luis Borges followed till the very end of his life, stressing that every great artist re-invents his forbears. The point of the arts is motion and back, view and re-view. Hans Van Heirseele understood this. In Brainbox, he first and foremost wants to mix well known and unknown artists and makes them reflect in small groups on the work the previous trio has produced. The art work as opera aperta, suggesting new shapes and interpretations. Because there are always three artists interact with the previous installation, the discours stays lively and dynamic.

The only disadvantage of the Brainbox concept is that you have to follow all interventions, one after the other, in order to get a real taste of it, otherwise you risk to miss the point or misinterpret the actions. Unit five for example, composed of Pieter Vermeersch, Lieve D'hondt and Eva-Maria Bogaert, had the audacity to show a white space: the floor, walls, ceiling, and even the mains outlets where covered in white paint. Unhesitatingly, this trio had taken down the very subtle and successful work by unit four, composed of Michaël Borremans, Dirk Zoete and Tinka Pittoors and simply dumped the parts in the corridor. You certainly can't accuse these artists of any kind of fetishism. Fortunately, Croxhapox records the stages of the Brainbox story and publishes them in word and sound on its excellent website - in case you missed one.'

/2/ At the end of the seventies, a visitor tells us, there was a DIY building package: a Box with everything in, on and about it. The big advantage: you needn't think about anything. It was a big hit. They used relays. You litereally didn't have to think about anything, everything was there, building instructions, components, circuitery etc. The only neede to be able to use a screwdriver. 

/3/ Intervention by Joris Van der Borght, close to the main entrance: a installation with neon light linking the word BRAINBOX (in blue) to these key words:  
COMMUNICATION
MOTIVATION

ILLUMINATION

DISCUSSION

REACTION

DEMONSTRATION

PROVOCATION

DISSOCIATION

EVOLUTION

NEGOCIATION

ILLUSTRATION

RENOVATION

CONFRONTATION

CAPTIVATION

REVOLUTION
 

/4/ The trajectory of the first edition, Fall 2006, is split in 7 units.
1 is Stijn Van Dorpe, Anton Cotteleer and Nicolas Leus.
2 is Thomas Bogaert, Carlo Mistiaen and Evert Defrancq.
3 /THE HEAD/ is Johan De Wilde, Ward Denys and Peter Morrens. Performer: van.
4 /ANARCHISTISCH PLOEGEN/ is Michaël Borremans, Tinka Pittoors and Dirk Zoete.
5 is Eva-Maria Bogaert, Lieve D'hondt and Pieter Vermeersch.
6 is Alda Snopek, Merlin Spie and Ludo Engels.
7 /SIFON/ is unit 1.
The trajectory of the second edition, October 2008 till early June 2009, consists of 11 units.
1 is the artist collective KAMP: Jelle Clarisse, Samir Boudia, Sarah Dhont, Sven Tassaert and Tuur Delodder.
2 is Christophe Lezaire, Marina Yee and Stijn Van Dorpe.
3 is Antoine Van Impe, Honoré d'O and Maud Vande Veire.
4 is Deborah Delva, Griet Dobbels and Peter Morrens from the Delva, Dobbels en Morrens company.
5 is Bart Dhaluin, Gerd Ververs and Reinhard Doubrawa (D).
6 is Grégory Decock (F), Michel Couturier and Yannick Franck.
7 is Daniëlle van Zuijlen (NL), Stefaan Dheedene and Steffie Van Cauter.
8 is Hans Demeulenaere, Thomas Böing (D) and WELD. WELD is Jan Wiels and Vincent de Roder.
9 is Bart Lodewijks (NL), Kelly Schacht and Thomas Bogaert.
10 is Lucie Renneboog, Marie Zolamian and Vadim Vosters.
11 is Adriaan Verwée, Dirk Zoete and Evert Defrancq.
 

/5/ The project is conceived as a process of mutation. The artists, joined in triples, wereallowed unlimited freedom to react to the products of the previous groups - even the very first triple who apparantly had no point of reference. Their freedom is literally unlimited because the artistic direction of Croxhapox never intervenes. But there are some constraints: it has to be a real collaboration, not an addition of individual show, the space itself (crox 3) and a limited budget of 1500 euro's. Another strong limitation is that the works produced are not to be carelessly destined to be dumped at the vault. On the other hand, nothing gets a label of integrity or originality: no artist can claim ownership over the results. The concept fit as seamlessly as possible into the definition of pure anarchy, total freedom, a freedom which, as soon as it is formulated in this way, requires a very transparant modus operandi.

One of the most remarkable results of the brainbox project is that this is indeed the case: anarchy re-generates an absolute sense of responsability which leads to a work process enabling literally anything without hampering others: la seule verité, c'est qu'il y a d'autres vérités. If 1 case is true, all is true .