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Things to do in Belgium: photography in Bruges, music in Dour, a food festival in Ghent, a market in Antwerp, and more. See you there!

Photography festival: Brugge Foto 14

Opens on Friday, 19 December Bruges

Sanne De Wilde Sanne De Wilde

In Bruges it’s all about photography this month, when Brugge Foto 14 takes over the city this Friday. The festival, this year under the theme “Asia” invites you to discover more than fifty different photographers in nine locations spread throughout the city, from 44 Gallery to the Stadshallen and the Schipperskapel. While “Faces of China” paints a portrait of the country today through picturing its people, “The Family of Chinese” presents a survey of the Chinese population in Belgium, photographed by the students of Bruges Fotohuis Academie. And don’t miss “Asia Express”, an exhibition which unites works of exciting rising Belgian talents from Maroeskja Lavigne to Sanne De Wilde.

Music: Le Père Noel est un Rockeur at Dour Sports

Saturday, 20 December, 16h30 Dour

Belgium’s beloved Dour Festival, a summer music bash well-known beyond the country’s borders, has a special treat in store for you to make it through winter’s festival dry spell. After a day in Mons and in Thuillies, the Dour organizers invite you to Dour Sports with “Le Père Noel est un Rockeur“, an indoor Christmas edition featuring a great line-up including Belgian up-and-comers Recorders, who just released their fantastic debut album “Above The Tide” on Caroline. Also live on stage: BRNS, Lemon Straw, La Smala and others; plus there’s a Chrstimas after party with the funny French bunch Salut C’est Cool.

Eat and drink: Kerk Food Festival

From 20 to 21 December, 11h00-22h00 Ghent

Bagels, burgers, Thai food, African dishes, Spanish tapas, fresh juices, Belgian classics and Mexican tacos: doesn’t this sound like a paradise for food lovers? Taste specialties from all around the world and sip a hot, spiced wine to some nice tunes at this weekend’s Food Festival located in Ghent’s gorgeous Kerk. A great way to start the Christmas holidays in a cozy atmosphere.

Last days: Ritornando at CIAC

Runs until Saturday, 20 December Ghent

Albert Baronian goes Ghent: With “Ritornando” the Brussels gallery invades CIAC, originally a car repair shop, presenting works from a number of different artists including Belgian painter Robert Devriendt or eccentric London duo Gilbert & George who are all in one way or another connected to the city of Ghent. “Ritornando” not only means return, but also the nostalgic strolling through places we’ve been to in the past, referencing Albert Baronian’s expo in Ghent in the 70s, his former gallery in Oudburg and his relationship to Jan Hoet and also SMAK, which was the first museum to buy works from the gallery.

Book launch: Rinus Van De Velde at SMAK

Friday, 19 December Ghent

Top-notch German art book publisher Hatje Cantz has released a splendid new book showcasing the captivating black and white charcoal drawings of Belgian artist Rinus Van De Velde. You can check out the beautiful publication at the launch this Friday at SMAK and get your hands on a brand new copy. The perfect Christmas gift for all art lovers. If you can’t make it to the event, you can order the book here.

Shopping: Rommelmarkt at Park Spoor Noord

Sunday, 21 December Antwerp

Still need to find some original Christmas presents? This Sunday there’s a great opportunity to make some good finds at an indoor flea market at Antwerp’s Park Spoor Noord. The more than 100 stands feature everything from vintage furniture to clothes and records. Entrance is free!

Exhibition: Rubens and his Legacy at Bozar

Until 4 January Brussels

There’s no doubt about it: this exhibition is an absolute must-see. “Sensation and Sensuality. Rubens and his Legacy” is a great art history lesson, not only showcasing works by the iconic Flemish painter himself but also the creations of artists he has inspired throughout the years, ranging from Van Dyck, Watteau, Delacroix, Manet and Kokoschka to Rembrandt and Picasso.

Cover photo Margaux Nieto 

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