Schauvliege’s “concept note” is a sort of white paper on the evolution of cultural policy in the coming years and will eventually be translated into a new Culture Decree. One of the main goals of the paper is to increase the pool of members of the various committees that advise the minister on the subsidies to be granted to groups and organisations, in order to make it easier to avoid conflicts of interest.
The plan foresees an increase in the port area of nearly 1,800 hectares. The Verrebroek dock on the left bank will be lengthened, and a new lock built on the Deurganck dock. The plan also leaves the door open for a new Saeftinghe dock at some point in the future. The land required for that dock has already led the town of Doel to be mostly abandoned; it is currently occupied by activists fighting the issue in the courts.
The contest is organised by Brouwland, a company that specialises in the provision of equipment and materials for the brewing, winemaking and liqueur industries, as well as offering kits for home brewers.
“We’re going in search of the best brewer who does it as a hobby. Professional brewers are not allowed to enter,” explains Stijn Michiels, marketing manager at Brouwland. “The winning team gets 500 litres of their own beer, brewed by a professional brewery. That’s a way of saying thanks to everyone who helped them along the way with a party.”
But I’m getting carried away with the old version of the Babel story as it appears in the Book of Genesis. This goes as follows: After the Flood, the survivors decided to build a city with a tower high enough to reach the heavens. They spoke a single language and worked effectively together, so God punished their presumption by mixing up their languages and scattering them across the face of the Earth.
You would be forgiven for missing the opening of De Grote Post, Ostend’s new culture centre. Though it’s been in the press for a couple of years, mostly with an air of relief that the building, which has stood empty since 1999, would finally be put to good use, it began staging events quietly, with invitation-only performances by Tom Lanoye and Wouter Deprez last December.
“Because of my political inspiration, rooted in the Christian-democracy and the Christian workers’ movement, some people find it unimaginable that I can function impartially as a minister for finance, even though there is nothing to prove this allegation. ... This atmosphere of distrust keeps me from my work, which is not in this country’s interest. It is not in my party’s interest either. I admit that it is more than what I can take as a person. Any doubt about my integrity, I find very unjust.”
“The SME platform allows us to encourage training within small businesses and makes it easier for our SMEs to use the services of external advisers,” commented Flemish minister-president Kris Peeters.
The SME platform will also include coaching for business owners, particularly for growth companies and companies that are being passed on from one family member to another. Companies requesting coaching will get ongoing practical support to a maximum value of €10,000.
Three years ago, Sihame El Kaouakibi (pictured) resolved to take street culture off the streets. With an initial grant of €20,000 from Antwerp city council, she organised a series of dirt-cheap summer dance workshops that eventually grew into
Every year, The Night of History is organised around a different theme, and this year it’s Craftsmanship. Craftspeople, historians and storytellers will give lectures and demonstrations on a rich array of trades practised in bygone times and today. Glass blowers, chocolatiers, bookbinders, auto mechanics, luthiers, stone carvers, master brewers, cheese makers, surveyors, blacksmiths, art restorers, puppeteers ... a dizzying array of experts wax poetic about their vocations.
The slogan for this year’s Passa Porta Festival is “Imagine!” It’s a large umbrella under which very different kinds of literature can be presented. It’s clear that the power of imagination reigns in the work of many visiting authors. It’s no coincidence, of course, that the festival puts an important focus on the consequences of the Arab Spring.