Be Film Festival, Brussels

The 7th edition of the Be Film Festival, an four-day long showcase of the best of Belgium cinema, not only offers five days of film screenings but also gives cinephiles the chance to meet with directors. Besides several premieres, the festival provides a selection of the best films released in the past year, with certain screenings even accompanied by live music performances – Belgian band The Bony King of Nowhere, for example.

From 19th until 23rd December
Bozar, Rue Ravensteinstraat 23 – 1000 Brussels
Cinematek, Rue Baron Hortastraat 9 – 1000 Brussels
www.befilmfestival.be

Vincent Fournier, Brussels

Courtesy Joye Gallery

You could say photographer Vincent Fournier has it in for robots and rockets. Having travelled the world on a quest to document the secret and unknown world of space exploration (his passion project has taken the Frenchman everywhere from Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre in Russia and the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah to the Atacama Desert Observatories in Chile, Fournier’s photographs capture with mystifying exactitude the intriguing world of space research, doing so with all the innocence, exuberance and excitement of a child. This is the first comprehensive exhibition of the artist’ work in Brussels, and is sure to delight fans of Solaris and 2001, A Space Odissey alike.

Until 18th January 2012
Joye Gallery, Chaussée de Vleurgat 125 Vleurgatsesteenweg – 1050 Brussels
www.joyegallery.be

Riffs, Brussels

Courtesy of Wiels

Riffs is an exhibition of the wide-ranging works of Yto Barrada. Showcasing everything from the artist’s old and new sculptures, her films as well as her photographs, the exhibition is evidence of Barrada’s engaging narrative – more statement than mere observation (Her pictures display rare plants, children absorbed in a game or a road under construction). Having studied political science, the artist also leads the Cinématheque in Tangier, which makes the current social and political upheaval currently gripping North Africa especially relevant. Indeed, Barrada’s work seeks to show the complexity of  Moroccan reality and everything that continues to resist homogenisation plans.

Until 31st December
Wiels, Av. Van Volxemlaan 354 – 1190 Brussels
www.wiels.org

Chilly Gonzales, Brussels

Grammy-nominatee, world-record holder (longest ever piano play), prodigy producer, versatile vocalist. It’s fair to say Canadian-born, Paris-based Gonzales has more than a talent up his sleeve. He’s back in Brussels tonight touring his latest album: ‘The Unspeakable Chilly Gonzales’. Expect lots of laughter, wit and a good dose of playful arrogance.

22nd December
Botanique, Rue Royale 236 Koningsstraat, 1210 Brussels
www.botanique.be

James Taylor Quartet, Ghent

The James Taylor Quartet, described as one of today’s most important British jazz-pop crossover outfits, comes to Ghent to celebrate its 25th anniversary after having played about 1000 shows and released countless of albums. The band’s latest, titled ‘The Template’, makes good on the quartet’s reputation for blending funk, mod and acid jazz in its very own, distinctive way and continues in its tradition for unabashed, unashamed and unrestricted goodness.

23rd December
Vooruit, Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat 23, 9000 Ghent
www.vooruit.be

Café Central Christmas Party, Brussels

If you’re of the type to run for the bar the minute the Christmas tree goes up, chances are you’ll end up at Cafe Central this Saturday. Trading in Stille Nacht for experimental, psychedelic rock, the downtown drinking den invites Brussels-based Shazzula (of acid punk group Aqua Nebula Oscillator) for a night of electric eclecticism. Everything from kraut rock, noise and progressive rock is on the menu.

24th December
Café Central, Rue Borgvalstraat 14 – 1000 Brussels
www.lecafecentral.com

Fuse & Wildfamily Xmas Madness, Brussels

Wildfamily, a collective led by Belgian DJ Igor Vicente and known for its truly wild nights, is set to put the house on fire at Fuse this Saturday, giving yet another perfect excuse for Christmas grumps to escape the dreaded festive proceedings. Igor, known for his dark and deep sound, is also part of Ultrasone, a collaboration with DJ Vernon Bara. Both have played all over Europe (Spain, France, Ukraine, …) and the duo recently started putting out their debut tracks on the reputed Visionquest label. Christmas’ going to be a party this year.

24th December
Fuse, Rue Blaesstraat 208 – 1000 Brussels
www.fuse.be