Group shows and guitar heroes. This weekend in Belgium.

Jan Vanriet, Brussels

A thriving Brussels art scene is welcoming a new member this weekend: the Roberto Polo Gallery, run by Cuban-American financier Roberto Polo will be opening its doors for the first time with an exhibition by Belgian painter Jan Vanriet. The artist from Antwerp, known for his restrained and narrative-driven paintings with which he has represented his home country at various Biennals and art festivals around the world, will present a selection of his most recent artworks under the theme ‘Closed Doors’.

Opening 21st November
Roberto Polo Gallery, Rue Lebeaustraat 8-10 – 1000 Brussels

In Between, Brussels

This group show, opening this week at Brussels’ Galerie Nathalie Obadia, marks an important change for the gallery: the departure of Sophie Hasaerts as artistic director and the arrival of Constance Dumas. The eclectic exhibition unites the works of 13 different artists, from Carole Benzakem, who unmasks “the insidious role that advertising and tourism play in cultivating and maintaining cultural stereotypes” (Art in America) to Guillaume Bresson, who mainly paints urban scenes full of violence. “What interests me is rather the movement and not the violence”, he recently told Arte. Other featured artists include New York-based Enoc Perez and Jessica Stockholder, whose “Color Jam” transformed an intersection in the Loop in downtown Chicago this summer.

Opening 22nd November
Nathalie Obadia Gallery, Rue Charles Decosterstraat 8 – 1050 Brussels

Nicolas Karakatsanis, Brussels

Galleries can be more than quiet spaces of contemplation where you can hear a pin drop: Nicolas Karakatsanis’ ‘Adjusting Infinity’ kicks off this Thursday with a live gig by MEAN, featuring Antwerp-based band Hickey Underworld. The Belgian artist, who also shoots ads and movies, produces slightly haunting but unfailingly hypnotising images full of darkness that shimmer in all shades of black. Dazed compares him to the “surrealist photographer Brassai who photographed the streets of Paris at night” and praises his “unique command of shadow.” Unmissable.

Opening 22nd November, 18h00
Exhibition runs until 21st December
Alice Gallery, Rue du pays de Liège 4 Land van Luikstraat – 1000 Brussels

Cheap Time, Brussels

Wallpaper Music‘s unexpected bursts of energy and blistering guitar constantly grab your attention, entrapping listeners in the 1970′s punk-inspired destruction,” writes Consequence of Sound about Cheap Time’s latest record, their third full-length effort. Cop a listen of the Nashville-based band’s punky garage-rock at Brussels’ Madame Moustache this weekend – the lads are looking forward to it: “These songs are really fun to play live, and that’s what really matters to us.”

23rd November
Madame Moustache, Quai au Bois à Bruler 5 Brandhoutkaai – 1000 Brussels

The Bots, Brussels

These two kids were already on the tip of everyone tongues at last summer’s Dour festival, and now they’re back in Belgium for a gig at Brussels’ Botanique. The two brothers, at only 18 and 14 years old, have been banging around with their fresh, raw rock tunes. The Guardian has praised their “feral punk energy” and they’ve been earning comparisons with The White Stripes and The Black Keys. Not bad for a couple of kids.

24th November
Botanique, Rue Royale 236 Koningsstraat – 1000 Brussels

Jessie Ware, Brussels

Jessie Ware made it into our New Kids music column back in May, and now her powerful pop is back for a live stint at Brussels’ Ancienne Belgique. Pitchfork knighted her with their much-anticipated ‘best new music’ label and described her debut album ‘Devotion’ as “a uniquely soulful masterclass”. Her ballad ‘Wildest Moments’ has been surfing the radio waves ever since: The pop world has found its new star.

24th November
Ancienne Belgique, Avenue Anspach 10 Anspachlaan – 1000 Brussels

Jack Whitten, Antwerp

Antwerp’s Zeno X Gallery presents ‘Loops’, the work of American abstract painter Jack Whitten, who has an eventful four-decade career behind him. Having grown up in Alabama he later moved to New York and developed a style that mixes Abstract Expressionism with figuration, and experiments with sculptural elements, collage, surfaces and textures. This exhibition showcases a selection of more personal and intimate works which might signify a slight change in his oeuvre.

Until 1st December
Zeno X Gallery, Leopold De Waelplaats 16 – 2000 Antwerp

The Big Convoy, Antwerp

Antwerp’s Annie Gentils gallery is putting on a show of works by Ghent-based Belgian artist Dirk Zoete. The expo unites pencil drawings and installations, with ‘The Big Convoy’, a row of connected carts that meander through the whole gallery space, acting as the main attraction. Everything, insists the artist, is correlated to the art of drawing: “Every spatial work – whether it is a model, a sculpture or an installation – is an extension of the drawing,” Zoete says. An interesting multidisciplinary approach and an exploration of human life.

Until 1st December
Annie Gentils Gallery, Peter Benoitstraat 40 – 2018 Antwerp

3 years Kissinger, Antwerp

What started out three years ago in a military hospital has now moved to Antwerp’s renowned M HKA: event organiser Gory Willems’ infamous Kissinger parties celebrate their third birthday this weekend. Four different stages with music acts and Djs from Belgian 80s icons The Neon Judgement to Nick Höppner, resident at Berlin’s legendary Berghain, all add up to a night to remember.

24th November
M HKA, Leuvenstraat 32 – 2000 Antwerp

The Paradise, Ghent

Ghent’s S&H De Buck Gallery, founded in 1972,  is an institution in Ghent’s art scene. This weekend, they’re celebrating their 40th birthday with a bang: the anniversary group show with the theme ‘The Paradise’ features the creations of no fewer than 41 different artists who all, in one way or the other, remain faithful to the gallery’s on-going commitment: to show art that is poetical, and that explores the tension between the individual and society or that explores the artist’s perception of his own surroundings versus the world. You’ll discover creations by Jean De Groote, Pierre Depuydt, Geert De Smet and many more.

Opening 22nd November
Galerie S&H de Buck, Zuidstationstraat 25 – 9000 Ghent

The New Candour, Ghent

This group show brings together the works of six different artists and is curated by Belgian writer, art critic and curater Hans Theys together with Tatjana Pieters. The selection includes a broad spectrum: young as well as older artists, new as well as historical works. But there’s one thing they all have in common: the perception that all art is about expressing one’s own vision of nature. The expo includes sculptures from Panamarenko and Bernd Lohaus, architectural installations by Luc Deleu, Kasper Bosmans’ paintings and more.

Until 23rd December
Tatjana Pieters Gallery, Nieuwevaart 124 – 9000 Ghent