The Antwerp Hundreds

Portraits of a city's people, today

To mark the release of our Warriors edition, we've teamed up with This is Antwerp to bring you 100 Antwerp Warriors, a 100-strong selection of local movers and shakers setting the tone for the neighbourhood of tomorrow. From design and architecture to contemporary art and politics, these are the creatives shaping the narrative of the future.

Orphan Fairytale

Orphan Fairytale

Musician

Can you describe what you do? Where you are based, the neighbourhood you live in, your daily routine, the people you work with, the scene you feel the closest to.

I let my dreams hatch in my Borgerokko-based cocoon which provides me and my cat Baby with the beautiful surroundings of the ‘Rivierenhof’ park. I like it here, the streets are calm and I share my garden with the guys from Afreux who have a silkscreen and layout workshop on the other side of it. Lately, I’ve been collaborating with Gerard Leysen on a project for the ‘Graphixxfestival’. Nice coincidence because he’s my neighbour and it worked out really well the first time. We’ve created a magical universe and are aiming to do so again. I also work in the kitchen of Mika, the castle bar of Het Middelheimmuseum, surrounded by a beautiful sculpture park.

How do you perceive Antwerp? In your view, what kind of city is it? Its people, its cultural landscape, its vibe? How does it compare to other, similarly-sized cities?

Although I can’t really compare it with another city, I see Antwerp as a nice little town with a lot of creativity going on. We like to combine forces transcending singular disciplines in order to create unique partying atmospheres.

How would you say has Antwerp contributed to making you who you are today? What role has the city played in shaping your outlook and career?

Losing my mom forced me to develop my own creative multiverse, an outlet that has helped me deal with the burden of my loss and has formed a beacon which has led me through these misty plains of sorrow. I embarked upon a number of musical projects. Having learned how to play the drums, I became the junior member of the legendary Maskesmachine. I also developed a keen interest in radio making for which Radio Centraal formed the ideal platform. The momentum created by these collaborations, along with the realisation that I had my own story to tell, eventually led to the emergence of Orphan Fairytale, my current musical project.

On a personal level, what would you like to see more of in the city?

I would like to see more green, of course! I think Belgium is the worst in building bike trails and the traffic is getting really horrible over here. Another thing that makes me sad is to see a lot of beautiful old buildings demolished and replaced by ugly new ones like shopping centres.

Where would you take out-of-towners?

First I’d take them to the Schelde, and then we’d go to Stadslimiet because there’s always a good show or exhibition over there, combined with a big party in that tiny place so we’d dance like dirty little sardines.

Photography Miles Fischler