CENTRALE for contemporary art and the Saint-Pierre University Hospital (Brussels) present piKuur, a project of photographic exhibitions.
Every two months, artist Vincen Beeckman presents in the Saint-Pierre University Hospital new series of photographs, genuine X-rays of life in a hospital, while offering a reading of the institution’s history (Porte de Hal’s main hall and César De Paepe’s waiting room). The shows broach the everyday life of the hospital as well as some hidden realities unknown of the public. This project is shown at the crossroads of human encounters. The material for thinking about exhibitions emerges from this city within the city. This truly participatory project involves all the hospital’s stakeholders (employees, patients and their visitors).
Coupled with the institution’s archives, plethora anecdotes and testimonials represent the basis of the different visual forms presented.
piKuur is not a photographic report, but rather a long-term participatory project carried out hand in hand with the people involved. The aim does not consist in revealing extraordinary things, but to go in depth with various people and include them in a project, bringing out the talents and specificities of each one, and many little simple and beautiful stories.
Vincen Beeckman would compare his intervention to that of a conductor who tries to work with people all the while respecting them.
Do you have a fond memory of the Saint-Pierre University Hospital? An anecdote, or simply something you would like to share? Whether you are a (former) doctor, patient, visitor, send your photos, messages etc. to Vincen Beeckman: firstname.lastname@example.org
28.01 > 28.03.2021 (Porte de Hal): piKuur #1: unlimited hospitality from the hospital cleaning service, wrestling, medieval games and JCVD, just that.
01.04 > 06.05.2021 (Porte de Hal): piKuur #2: a mole’s work, a collection of dentures, microfilms all over the place, old files and archives brought back to life.
17.06 > 29.08.2021 (Porte de Hal): piKuur #3: in the medical archives of the Research Unit. 10 years of records, files and valuable information about the hospital’s patients.
02.09.2021 > 20.02.2022 (Porte de Hal) & 24.02 > 15.05.2022 (César De Paepe): piKuur #4: on the ninth floor of the site of Caesar de Paepe, there is a physiotherapy space for seniors. There one experiences revalidation, weight training, learning how to avoid falls. It is a world in which everything flows slowly, where the atmosphere is hushed, where one finds a magnificent panoramic view on Brussels.
24.02 > 15.05.2022 (Porte de Hal) & 02.06 > 10.07.2022 (César De Paepe): piKuur #5: Day and night, the doors of the hospital are manned and secure, with the corridors and entrances conveying a sense of comfort. The security service keeps a watchful eye and intervenes when issues arise within the hospital walls. Conflicts and bad energy are defused or shown the door. This new series is about the men in the wings who keep you safe in the hospital 24/7.
02.06 > 10.07.2022 (Porte de Hal) & 14.07 > 02.10.2022 (César De Paepe) : piKuur #6: Two photographic series are presented. One is based on a photo booth installed at the entrance of Saint-Pierre University Hospital. Caregivers, patients, workers, visitors … all had the opportunity to have their portrait taken. This is accompanied by photos of visits to the orthopaedic department: casts, broken arms, repaired legs and knees! Who hasn’t had to go through this repair process one day, whether young or old, following a fall or a badly controlled slip! With of course signatures of friends on the beautiful white plaster.
14.07 > 02.10.2022 (Porte de Hal) & 13.10.2022 > 08.01.2023 (César De Paepe) : piKuur #7 : This is an immersion into the world of children’s drawings found in the archives of Saint-Pierre University Hospital. Stories, texts and poems have been created around stays or visits at the hospital. They offer an opportunity to imagine, dream, and put oneself in the shoes of all these young ones who have healed their wounds, sometimes for several years, in this care centre.
13.10.2022 > 08.01.2023 (Porte de Hal) & 12.01 > 02.04.2023 (César De Paepe) : piKuur #8 : At the entrance of the hospital, the usual baxter, a cigarette… They are waiting for an operation, or finishing their cure… We share a moment of relaxation outside, a chat, a story. A whole series of adventures lived and shared has been collected, rewritten, photographed, and rendered in this humble presentation.
12.01 > 02.04.2023 (Porte de Hal) : piKuur #9 : One dives into the world of the emergency room, as in TV series, but with just a pencil in hand and, from time to time, a camera. All ears, eyes that scrutinize, pain, impatience, sometimes violence… A series of chairs are installed in a square where spouses and friends wait in the hope that the accident will not turn out to be too serious or that the illness will be resolved as soon as possible.
Brussels-based Vincen Beeckman feeds off the universes that he roams and that move him in his practice. Collaborating intensely and as often as possible with the characters that fill his images, he can also become their model or form a storytelling duo with them. Immersed in the field, inside groups, he often positions himself as the guiding thread of a photographic collection under construction. In the Cracks project for instance, Vincen Beeckman used disposable cameras in collaboration with the homeless of Brussels Central Station.
His work focuses on the fragility of human life and the positive energy that can be decoded or injected into it. As the designer of offbeat projects such as La Fusée de la Motographie or La Pêche aux Canards Belge (Arles, 2019), the photographer also knows how to distance himself from an image and assemble mythical or realistic stories through other mediums such as sound, text, jam-making or still, tea dances…
Another remarkable talent: Vincen is a fan of miniature golf!
An initiative of the Aldermanship for Cultural Affairs of the City of Brussels
© Vincen Beeckman
piKuur – a project of exhibitions at Saint-Pierre University Hospital
Porte de Hal – Rue aux Laines, 105 – 1000 Brussels
César De Paepe – Rue des Alexiens, 13 – 1000 Brussels