What’s on this week: 3 August


Hollywood stars sculpted out of sand, Lokeren’s take on Gentse Feesten and an art fair at the coast: our pick of events in Flanders and Brussels this week

FAMILY: Stars Sand Sculpture Festival

Ostend’s annual sand sculpture festival returns with some familiar faces. This year’s edition is dedicated to stars of film, music and sport, from classic personalities like Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe to the hype-brokers of the 21st century, internet-age stars like Justin Bieber and Beyonce.

There are also local heroes in the collection, namely former Ostend resident Marvin Gaye and Ostend-born rock singer Arno. The festival’s 150 giant sand sculptures, created by 40 artists from 12 countries, form a 1km walking tour. The exhibition is wheelchair accessible and can be enjoyed rain or shine. Until 4 September, Zeeheldenplein, Ostend

MUSIC FESTIVAL: Lokerse Feesten

Festival season rolls on with this major music event. While not as extensive as the Gentse Feesten, Lokeren’s equivalent brings in loads of international headliners in addition to national favourites. Flanders is ably represented by the likes of Trixie Whitley (8 August), Arno (9 August) and Selah Sue (11 August). Among the visiting artists are folk-rock icon Van Morrison (9 August) and metal legends Slayer (7 August). Camping is available nearby. Children under 12 enter the festival grounds for free. 5-14 August, Grote Kaai, Lokeren

FESTIVAL: Cirque Magique

Cirque Magique may be a relative newcomer to the Flemish festival scene but the techno-oriented event has already distinguished itself. Last year’s inaugural edition drew 4,000 visitors and garnered rave reviews for its carnival atmosphere – complete with real circus performers – and its bold pop-up architecture. The accolades didn’t end there. Cirque Magique also won the prize for Best Breakthrough Festival at the Redbull Elektropedia Awards. This second edition promises to be bigger and better, with 65 underground DJs from around the world performing on several eye-catching stages. Organisers have doubled the size of their campground to accommodate even more festivalgoers. 5-7 August, Festivalterrein, Ledegem

EVENT: Art Nocturne Knocke

Summer isn’t known for its art fairs but Art Nocturne Knocke has taken the necessary steps to succeed in the off-season. First of all, it follows its guests to the coast, namely to the upscale waterfront community of Knokke-Heist. Second, organisers let holidaymakers enjoy sea and sun. The twin fair venues don’t open their doors to prospective buyers until 16.00. Inside, visitors will find art from around the world and every historical period, traded by some of Europe’s most prestigious galleries. All this makes for a successful formula. Art Nocturne Knocke is now in its 41st edition. 6-15 August, CC Scharpoord and Hotel la Réserve, Knokke-Heist

More events that deserve your attention

Rebirth: Contemporary Colombian theatre-maker Enrique Vargas and his Barcelona-based company Teatro de los Sentidos turn grapes into cava in this surreal allegory of life. Part of Zomer van Antwerpen. 5-27 August, Stadsfeestzaal, Meir 78, Antwerp

Reggae Geel: Pioneering reggae festival is still carrying the torch for Jamaican music nearly 30 years after its inaugural edition in 1978. The weekender features dozens of acts as well as a Fair Trade market and more. 5-6 August, Malosewaver, Geel

Festival Dranouter: Dubbed the “festival of new traditions”, this West Flanders festival has been at the cutting edge of folk and rock since 1975. This year’s headliners include American folk-pop singer Suzanne Vega. 4-7 August, Dikkebusstraat, Dranouter

Cinema Urbana: Open-air film festival offers free waterfront screenings Wednesday to Saturday all summer long. Theme “Wonders & Miracles” focuses on the fantastic. Until 27 August 22.00, Plantinkaai, Antwerp

Nacht van Het Zoute: Knokke’s annual late-night shopping crawl sees the chic seaside town’s main drag come alive with performances, fashion shows and parties until the wee morning hours. 5 August 17.00, Kustlaan, Knokke-Heist