wpZimmer is an international workspace for the arts, with a focus on performance, dance and hybrid artistic practices. The organisation revolves around the needs of the artists, their desire to research or create and the development of their skills and practices.
The open residency program supports a wide range of artists. Some need a well-equipped studio with accommodation for the team, others a small room to dive into their research, a place to organise a reading group, a dialogue about an application or an in-depth discussion about their next project.
With eight artists workplace Zimmer enters into a long-term relationship. The objective is to empower them to organise themselves independently. The approach is always flexible and tailored to their specific needs. It includes an artistic dialogue, financial and production management and diffusion or network support.
wpZimmer shares its infrastructure with a number of small organisations. It’s a lively, collective workplace where contacts, know-how and experience are shared.
wpZimmer has both feet firmly in the arts. Working with artists on a daily basis, we are constantly expanding our network of national and international organizations. Our first direct partners are the arts centres, cultural centres and festivals at home and abroad.
Artistically we work with makers starting out on their careers and with an innovative practice. This sometimes requires a different approach, particularly when ‘in situ’ work is involved. Over the next few years we will be exploring that theme with C-Takt: a bundling of resources, knowledge and (inter)national networks designed to strengthen the support base for artists working outside the auditorium. Together with our artists we go in search of a diverse public in and outside the auditorium. To that end we work with schools and social organizations, but also with structural partners like MAF, 0090, ccBe, KAAP, Kunst in Zicht, the Conservatoire and ARIA.
Internationally, we are a driving force behind WEB, a network of international organizations which every year supports two creations by theatre-makers about to make their international breakthrough. In 2015 we joined N.O.W., an EU network that offers guidance to artists, with the focus on reflection and experimentation.
C-Takt is an international research and development platform for transdisciplinary art in and out the theatre. C-Takt was initiated in 2017 from the merger between the workspace of C-Mine (Genk) and Takt Dommelhof (Neerpelt). The platform works on a structural basis together with wpZimmer, 0090, SOAP, Musica and In Situ.
Artistic consultation, mobility and sharing know-how are central to the network. There is a strong ambition to make maximum use of the complementary forces within the network. For example, at least one project per year is set up for each structural partner, which is promoted, presented and distributed via the network. Infrastructure and logistics are also shared.
The network C-Takt exists at the moment of following organisations:
- C-mine (Genk),
- Takt Dommelhof (Neerpelt),
- wpZimmer (Antwerpen),
- 0090 (Antwerpen / Istanboel),
- SoAP (Maastricht / Gent), Musica (Neerpelt),
- In Situ (Europees netwerk)
WEB is an informal international network for creation and presentation, operating since 2009. The network is an answer to the need for better joint efforts and partnership within the performing arts, particularly in terms of exchange, research, production and presentation.
WEB brings together workspaces, arts centres and festivals in order to reinforce each other across the national borders. The aim is to give integral support to two artists per year. The focus is on upcoming artists on the verge of an international breakthrough.
WEB provides the artist full support from “A to Z”. The partners guarantee space for research and creation through a series of residencies. They offer financial, logistical, and technical support. They give administrative back-up and artistic feedback during the creation process. Each collaboration culminates in a series of presentations, inside and outside of the network.
WEB currently gathers:
- Carine Meulders – wpZimmer (Antwerp, BE)
- Tom Bonte – Beursschouwburg (Brussels, BE)
- Mark Timmer – Frascati (Amsterdam, NL)
- Liliane Schaus – Uzès Danse (Uzès, FR)
- Eliane – Dheygere – Le Vivat (Armentières, FR)
- Roger Merguin – Gessnerallee (Zürich, CH)
- Aaron Wright – Fierce Festival (Birmingham, UK)
- Laura McDermott – Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (Brighton, UK)
- Anne-Cécile Sibué – Black Box teater (Oslo, NO)
- Bettina Kogler – Tanzquartier (Wien, AU)
- Gaston Core – Hiroshima (Barcelona, ESP)
Former partners include: Vooruit (Ghent, BE), Göteborg Dans & teater Festival (Göteborg, SE), Schwankhalle Bremen (Bremen, DE), 104 (Paris, FR), Centre Pompidou Metz (Metz, FR), Fabrik Potsdam (Potsdam, DE), Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin, DE), Dampfzentrale Bern (Bern, CH).
Since the start in 2009 WEB supported the work of the following artists:
- For Faces by Antonia Baehr (WEB 1.5)
- Already Made by Gaëtan Bulourde (WEB 2.6)
- Eden Central by Manah De Pauw (WEB 3.5)
- The Magic of Spectacular Theatre by Gérald Kurdian (WEB 4.4)
- Passage à l’acte by Fanny de Chaillé (WEB 5.6)
- Hulk by Diederik Peeters (WEB 6.6)
- Intergalactic by Andrea Bozic (WEB 7.5)
- Holiday on Stage by Martin Schick & Damir Todorovic (WEB 8.4)
- Dragging the Bone by Miet Warlop (WEB 9.5)
- MARS II by Karl Van Welden (WEB 10.7)
- The Automated Sniper by Julian Hetzel (WEB 11.8)
- The Art of a Culture of Hope by Jessica Huber & James Leadbitter aka the vacuum cleaner (WEB 12)
N.O.W. stands for New Open Working Process for the Performing Arts. It is a European network of cultural professionals working in the field of the performing arts, and aims to develop a transnational laboratory platform to explore new ways of supporting artists and their processes. What might an artist’s journey look like in a larger and globalised Europe? What will it mean over the coming years to accompany artists and their processes – to support the unfolding of their work? How can we provide a positive impulse for our societies and contribute to building a European artistic environment that is diverse, creative and socially rooted?
By setting up an integrated task force and creating a face-to-face meeting with our respective practices, NOW aims to analyse in depth and in context the current situation. On the other hand we will experiment with new models of action with chosen artists, artistic communities, cultural places and the wider public.
wpZimmer (Antwerp, BE), Extrapole (Lille, FR), Latitudes Contemporaines (Lille, FR), Lókal (Reykjavik, IS), Fabbrica Europa (Florence, IT), Indisciplinarte (Terni, IT), Mom / El Vivero (Olot, ES), Trafó (Budapest, HU)
In the frame of the N.O.W. partnership, wpZimmer has started a coaching trajectory with two artists: Italian Leonardo Delogu and Spanish Sonia Gomez. One of wpZimmer’s artists in residence, Gosie Vervloessem, was also invited by the group to join the network. She started a collaboration and exchange programme with Lókal and Mom / El Vivero.
Half A House
In May 2017, a group of curators, artists, theoreticians, scientists, activists… live and work together for one week at the Pallazina Ex Fabbri in Florence, in the frame of the Fabbrica Europa festival. The central theme is the artistic practice of today. How can one be productive and fragile at the same time? Can openness be a force and a possibility for navigating in a moment of drastic changes?
A project by Ief Spincemaille: see ropeblog.net
Introducing a project
wpZimmer has no fixed procedure for selecting artists. We are no commission or fund. We do not work with deadlines or submitting periods, we are simply available and curious. wpZimmer has no profile into which artists or their work have to fit. We feel that artists should develop themselves in freedom. They are the ones to determine the future of art, not we!
Nonetheless, here are a couple of recommandations for those who want to write, e-mail or call us:
- provide information about your background and work
- describe the project you want to talk about (concept, team, partners)
- make clear what you need or expect
- a thorough acquaintance (a talk, a performance or a video we can watch) precedes any kind of commitment
Contact the artistic direction: firstname.lastname@example.org
Since 2001 wpZimmer has been housed in a building in the multicultural neighborhood of Antwerp North, on the border of the working-class districts of Stuivenberg and Seefhoek. The building in the Gasstraat, located at the numbers 88-90, is recognizable on the street side by the large iron blue gate. Once behind this gate you will find yourself in a real little cité, typical of this old working-class area.
Up to the mid-seventies, this complex of buildings housed a vegetable storage depot. The typical thick walls, the straw-filled massive doors of the old cold stores (now the technical space and staircase) and the decrepit ice machine that was left behind in the cellar, are still some of the many traces of that colourful past.
In the outhouses (in the front and left) there used to be a garage (now a set storage), a small canteen space with rooms on top (now the foyer and kitchen) and two small houses that are rendered accessible via what is now the foyer space. In the seventies and eighties the premises deteriorated and mainly served as a storage depot and parking for cars.
In 1993 De Beweeging took up its residence here and renovated the premises wherever necessary to rearrange it as a theatre building and rehearsal place. Since the arrival of wpZimmer in September 2001, the theatre infrastructure is mainly used as a working studio. Only occasionally public activities are organised here.
The infrastructure at the disposal of wpZimmer is U-shaped and contains:
- one big polyvalent studio (17m x 18m), with theatre-technical equipment
- a smaller poly functional space
- a technical workshop
- a storage depot nu atelier?
- a kitchen/foyer
- lodging facilities for max. 6 persons + showers and sanitary fittings (three bedrooms)
- a backyard with a tree
Bustling though the north Antwerp atmosphere definitely is, wpZimmer offers a quiet environment to work in and its infrastructure and lodging facilities are excellent for residences. Its compact setting benefits the fluent communication between the wpZimmer team and the artists, in an almost homely atmosphere.