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Alexandra Decraene

Brussels I love You journey curator

From the 11th until the 18th February, Brussels will live at the pace of contemporary art, thanks to the second edition of BRUSSELS I LOVE YOU (BILY), a contemporary art journey, which will declare its passion to the artistic scene of the city, for Valentine's day. Due to the interview with Alexandra Decraene, curator of this journey, get to know more about this arty stroll in beautiful Brussels… What is new about this second edition of Brussels I Love You? We have more participants (from 17 last year to 24 this year), therefore a much more complete panel of venues to discover. Moreover, we are fortunate enough to collaborate with the Boghossian foundation or the extremely valuable collection of Charles Riva. Once can say that BILY has stepped up. How did you design this journey? What was your approach? BILY (BRUSSELS I LOVE YOU) is a contemporary art journey, it’ll take place from the 11th until the 18th February 2017, this year. We focused on the Ixelles quarter, close to the one of Chatelain, last year, in order to establish guided tours of Patinoire Royale, a partner and a famous venue of Brussels. Moreover, we get along with the galleries of the quarter therefore we wanted to support them again this year! The aim of this journey is to make you re-discover the quarters this week, in vogue with the municipalities of Ixelles and Saint-Gilles, from an artistic angle. Next year, we’ll go further down in the city! Can you tell us a little more about the events which will punctuate this journey? Organized by BILY, the main events are the guided tours and a “meet up”, so as to meet professionals of the art world. This also includes a private viewing, where one can taste Belgian beer. In addition, the galleries are free to organize the activities, as they please. We offer them visibility and visitors, it’s up to them to get people interested and retain loyalty! Is there an artist who is part of this journey, who caught your attention in particular? Our participants are varied spaces: Atelier Relief is an area for creation, like a production studio, Peinture Fraiche is a bookshop, Riva Project is a collection, Musumeci contemporary is an art center, Odradek is a residence etc. they are given the same attention as the artists, Bily is here to make you discover various places with different approaches. But to answer your question, the exhibition at Riva Project is extremely beautiful and I can’t wait to discover the work of Xavier Le Normand at LKFF, which according to me is true romanticism. One has the impression that the artistic scene in Brussels is booming. What are its special features? The artistic scene is booming because the collectors are present. Moreover, Brussels is a cosmopolitan city (this is nothing new) with easy access. The fairs are qualitative and not many museums offer a refined and in-depth program. Therefore, this makes more room for galleries and art centers. Since a few years now, one has been saying that Brussels is the “new Berlin”. The art schools are renowned, and the rents aren’t very expensive, so artists can settle down and develop their art. The laws concerning street art aren’t very strict. All in all, the artists have some room for creation. BRUSSELS I LOVE YOU, from 11th till 18th February, more information on: http://www.brusselsiloveyou.com/
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