Performance at the Paris Biennale, 1980.
Musée d'Art Moderne de Paris.
I was selected by the Belgian Commission for a performance at the biennale together with colleague artist Jonas Wille. To this end a cage was put in the entrance hall of the museum. We were scheduled to be locked up for several days in the cage. By order of the commissioner of the biennale, the cage was dismanteld and removed by the workers of the museum on the opening day of the biennale. Consequently the performance had to be cancelled.The performance was finished
before it even started.....
Hair Paintings, Gallery Ronald Donahue, New York, 1985
During the opening of a group exhibition visitors were asked to sit on a chair that stood right in the middle of the room. Unlike a hairdresser who works with comb and scissors, I worked my clients using acrylic paint and a paintbrush. Small paintings were made on the tuft of hair of several volunteers. Some of them left the paintings on their hair, others cut it out to put on display against the wall.
“To be let” happening, Artshop Plaizier, Brussels, 1984
For two days I ran the artshop. All displayed posters and postcards were overpainted. The painted items were then sold at the original retail prices. The shop completely sold out in two days.
Performance at the opening of an exhibition by Jan De Winter
During the opening speech, I passed several times by a large opening in the gallery wall, each time carrying or waring different attributes which Jan De Winter had used in his exhibited work. The speaker was totally unaware of what was happening behind his back. Every time I walked by I stripped one garment untill I was completely naked.
Rock Painting, Cirque d'Hiver / Beaubourg, Paris 1982
During a party, organized by the French magazine “Actuel”, a performance was made at the Cirque d’Hiver. This circus consisted of two tracks which were interconnected by a 10 by 3 m hallway. The actual performance took place in this hallway which had been extended with occasional walls made of transparent plastic sheets. The audience stood behind these plastic sheets. Several participants were traced and painted directly onto the plastic sheets. The paint did not acutally touch the participants, but they could feel the pressure of the paint brush through the plastic sheets as I traced their figure. The performance at the Cirque d’Hiver had to be cut off prematurely due to a supersaturated hallway with people which caused a turmoil and aggression amongst the public. Subsequently this performance was repeated twice, once at the Centre Pompidou and once in an apartment on the rue St. Denis.
Dog performance, Gallery L. Bilinelli, Brussels
The performance was not announced to the guests of an art show and came therefore as a total surprise to the public and the gallery owner. Disguised as a hairy dog, wrapped up in a woolen carpet and waring a muzzle and plastic gloves to protect my hands and feet, I crawled through the streets of Brussels towards the gallery with Eddy Kennis (a fellow artist) who acted as a blind man carrying a black cane instead of the classic white cane. Eddy also wore sunglasses with moving and flickering winshield wipers.
Knorr Art Lunch Happening, New Workshop, Brussels, 1983
Three large tables were placed in a U-shape representing the scene of the last supper. Large spaghetti images painted on 20 m2 Knorr posters were fixed to the walls. The visitors sitting at the tables were being served with instant spaghetti. A waiter, dressed in tuxedo, poured hot water over the instant spaghetti. Meanwhile, outside the building I produced another 20 m2 spaghetti painting.
Red and Green performance, Berlin
This performance was made together with Jonas Wille. In front of the Berlin Wall we set up an installation referring to the real wall. We broke through “our” wall symbolising the liberation of mankind.
Dance performance, The new workshop,
In order to take a group photo, a bunch of students walked across the streets of Brussels, to the New Workshop, where a dance event was being organized.
Belgica Hommage, ICC Antwerp, 1980
During an official tribute to the Belgian royal couple, Jonas Wille and I perfomed in front of the ICC which was the former royal palace. Dressed in a white suit I carried a pole on my shoulders with three firework pots attached to it. After they were lit, red, yellow and black smoke rose from the pole high above the ICC.
My naked penis was rubbed in with yellow paint while my testicles were coloured with red and black paint. The performance came to an end when the police and the fire brigade arrived on the scene.
Action Painting performance, “Hallen van Schaarbeek”, 1985
At the re-opening ceremony of the “Hallen” (an indoor market place) following the renovation of the building, I wore a silver colour astronaut uniform. This uniform had several small mirrors attached to the back. Using a steel rope mechanism I had to climb like a mountaineer to get to a 10 meters long billboard canvas that was stretched seven or eight meters above the heads of the public. Hanging in this rope construction I moved from one side of the canvas to the other meanwhile covering the surface with spray paint. During the act laser beams aimed at my back were reflected by the multiple mirrors and filled the space with fairy-like white light.
The burning performance, Chapel Campo Santo Ghent, 1992
A series of 4 by 8 meter paintings with a repetitive motive of a flowerpot containing two flowers covered the church windows. At the end of the exhibition the paintings were taken down and stacked on top of each other. Finally I set fire to the stack of paintings to emphasise the idea that the artist who creates a painting is the ultimate master of his work.
Tarzan performance, Zoo of Amiens, France
This performance was not announced to the visitors of the zoo. An image depicted from an American Tarzan comicbook had been blown-up by means of a photocopying machine and put up in lion cage . Subsequently I painted over the photocopy, hence creating a new image. I did this as tarzan dressed in a tigerprint bathing suit.
Direct computerintervention during a live broadcast‘Eiland’ from the Bourlaa
‘Eiland’ was a weekly Flemish cultural TV show about films, performances, theatre, art, music etc…, presented by Dirk Thielemans. During the live broadcast I created a work of art on the computer. The work which consisted of several overpainted camera stills was shown as one overflowing shot on television.
Splash performance, Feldheim Castle, Zaventem
Feldheim Castle is situated in the municipal park of Zaventem. There is a large pond behind the castle. A cable had been stretched between the rooftop and the rim of the pond. A large white panel had been posted at the lower extremity of the steel cable. Peter Bertoux – being the dummy - stood in front of this panel.
Dressed up in a black tuxedo, with balloons and livejacket, I slid down the cable holding a plastic bag filled with paint in both hands. Al the end of each glide I splashed into the water, but before doing so I threw the plastic bags with paint onto the model. By the end of the performance the model was completely covered in paint. After each splash the audience would pull me out of the pond using some sort of pulley mechanism.
Video Paintings, Beursschouwburg, Brussels, 1985
Normally the artist sits face to face with his model. This time the model sat behind the painter (me) and was being filmed and projected onto the screen of the monitor in front of me. A plastic sheet had been fixed over the screen. The model was then painted onto this plastic sheet. Several models volunteered. The models could keep their portrets.
Knorr Art Lunch Happening, New Workshop, Brussels, 1983
Quick lime was poured into a wooden box of 4 by 6 meters, in which plastic bags filled with water were hidden.
Jonas Wille (a fellow artist) and myself, both wrapped in bandages like mummies, were tied together back to back with ropes. While Berlin, a Lou Reed song, was played in slow motion, our bodies moved in a ritual, rhythmic manner through the quick lime, causing the plastic bags to burst. As a result of this process our bodies produced a drawing in the white substance, unfortunately we also suffered from severe burning wounds.
The performance lasted for about 30 minutes.
Arts + Machina 2, Ecole d'Architecture de Bretagne, Rennes, 1983
In a large location the audience moved around between 5 plastic walls. Some of the spectators were painted through the plastic wall. Meanwhile a fragment from an American movie got copied, blown-up and projected onto a large screen. After editing the newly assembled image, I painted over it.
Red and Black performance, Gallery Titanik, Turku, Finland, 1990
The gallery has a large window overlooking the street. Before the performance started, I put down sheets of white paper on the floor. The sheets had black stamped drawings on them. There was a gap between each drawing which was at least as big as the size of my hand. At the start of the performance I entered the room blind folded and searched for the spot with the sheets of paper where I was expected to perform. Confused and disoriented I tried to reconstruct the black stamp drawings, this time using red ink. The result was a chaotic mixture of red and black images.
A one kilometer long drive of Marimont (Brabant-Wallon) was covered with street graffiti over the full length. This was done in collaboration with the municipal workers and using the same process as to apply traffic stripes.
Rock’n Roll dance party, “Hallen van Schaarbeek”, 1982
A different installation was set up in each of the two halls. In the major hall stood a dodgem cars attraction that offered free rides to the public. Next to the attaction a large screen (4 by 8 meters) was fixed on which rock paintings were projected. White smoke was blown over the arena by a generator in order to create an impression of dodgem cars riding on white clouds.
In the second hall a boxing ring surrounded by transparent plastic sheets was installed with a TL-lamp posted verticallly in each corner and a constantly flashing stroboscopic light. I danced in this cage with several partners until I was exhausted. A microphone attached to my chest captured my heartbeat which was amplified by the soundsystem and broadcasted in the hall. Meanwhile the public could take a look at my ‘rock’ paintings, and enjoy a live performance by the rockband ‘De Mens’.
Mallemunt festival, Brussels
Jonas Wille and myself moved through the “Nieuwstraat” (which is a traffic-free shopping street) in north-south direction. Jonas Wille could see but not walk, I on the contrary could walk but not see. Therefore Jonas operated as my guide. His task was complicated by the fact that I carried a long pole on my shoulders which hindered the other pedestrians. The performance ended on the “Munt-square” were a few spectators were wrapped in a large green canvas.
Polaroid Performance, Canjotto, 2013
For the opening of Canjotto's office in Gent I made stamps to decorate the guests,They could choose their favourite tatoo place and from every guest a polaroid picture was made and pinned on the office wall.
Piano Performance, Huis Happaert, 2014
For the exhibition of Fabels in 'Het Huis Happaert 'I asked the Monotrol kid to make an interpretation on the CD, 'Et voila le travail', a concert of me and Hugo Claus in the early1990's.
I accompanied him with 2 hammers on the piano.