The Brussels Bike Hundred

100 portraits, stories and bicycles

We’re teaming up with Bike for Brussels to put together a 100-strong selection of local heroes shaping the city each in their own way. From designers and DJs to performers and publishers, these are the creatives riding Brussels forward.

Oscar Cassamajor

Oscar Cassamajor, 1993

Visual artist and dancer

Describe yourself, your background and what you do today.

I’m philanthropic artist in constant search for a way to get people involved in a brighter future. As an artist and person I have the feeling I never rest for this case and all I do is search different ways to open up the utopian visions that could after all manifest in physical existence.

My first connection to art happened through dance; a way to explore physical borders of the body and free the mind by the possibility of totally free movement in any place. Then I thought that if my body is able to move freely in any situation, I could set my mind to it too. This is where I got the feeling that after all, everything should be possible. Today I work a lot with children from different ages and backgrounds. I take them on this physical freedom to then go on film and be creative to make them enter wide possibilities. This multimedia approach comes from me discovering the visual art form of performance.

Next to my long-term work with children, I’m part of an experimental visual theatre group called We don’t know yet. Together with Loucka Fiagan we attempt to represent the needs of the soul in a sick society. I strongly believe that an artwork should not stay in the mental or emotional space, so I decided to get involved in the construction of communities that give me the freedom to create new ideas and energies to bring to a place called society.

How has Brussels shaped you as an individual as well as your professional activities?

As an artist, I believe that the line between personal and professional activities is really thin. What really shaped me was my first collaborative experience in Brussels with CHPT.01, because I got to know like-minded people who also question the aim of an artist and are open enough to have deep conversations about philanthropy. We did a project with a big group of people, which gave me the chance to adjust and confront my own ideas to theirs.

Brussels is a vivid city with lots of different flavours. It’s just big enough to remain invisible – which means less pressure -, and small enough to have a great group of friends and collaborations around. There’s a sort of chaos, which gives a feeling that everything is possible; the Night Shop Gallery Chez Madeleine is a perfect example of something I can only see develop in Brussels. Another useful aspect of the city is the amount of trash you can find and re-use, be it for art or your home.

I strongly believe that an artwork should not stay in the mental or emotional space.

List three things you like the most about Brussels.

  • The mix of cultures that makes all identities fade out.
  • A journey to the Marolles – by bike or not – to fill a bag with treasures or eat good food at the Midi market.
  • The people I met along the way, because they inspired what I’m about to create now.

List three deciding factors that converted you to bicycle use.

  • Cycling gives me the freedom to go to any place in Brussels to chill, talk and think.
  • It’s the fastest means of transport and I don’t like to pay for public transport.
  • The energy I feel after a nice ride home.

What are your favourite bike routes in Brussels?

Riding a bike is more of a practical choice, but I like to ride to good spots like Brussels Park in the summer, the Palace of Justice or just hop on and off my bike around the centre.