D.A.T.E. 2018: Jan Fabre’s Troubleyn Laboratory

TagsD.A.T.E. 2018, modern art, performance, theater
  • this is antwerp
  • this is antwerp
  • this is antwerp
  • this is antwerp
  • this is antwerp

On the 3rd day of D.A.T.E. we were invited to Troubleyn, the creative lab of Antwerp artist Jan Fabre and his company. What a tour it was...

The house and its master

Company manager Mark showed us around in this incredible hub. A former theatre, burned down in the seventies and rebuilt in 2004. Since 2007 it's home to one of the most innovative and versatile Belgian artists of his generation: Jan Fabre (°1958). Over the past 30 years he produced works as a theatre maker, author and visual artist.

Love for theatre

Fabre started at a very young age as a visual artist. In the eighties he was part of an Avant-Garde movement that created ground-breaking art performances. His love for theatre grew by the year. That shows at Troubleyn, the complex houses two rehearsal rooms, including a theatre hall and a studio, used for creating productions, host master classes but also as a breeding ground for other companies.

Science and art

Remarkable is their scientific approach to the performance arts, unseen in the art scene. Artists are approached as athletes, which of course they are. Here they learn how to get even more better in executing their art, supported by scientists.

Art as naive guarantee

What makes Troubleyn even more special is their collection of integrated art work. Created by fellow artists, tailer made for this building. As the works of art are part of the building, the building will never be demolished, otherwise so many precious art work would go to waste. At least that’s what they hope: “let’s call it a naive guarantee”, Mark says.

The master himself

We didn’t meet Fabre himself, probably being very busy creating art work for Antwerp Baroque 2018. He will create three new alter pieces for Amuz, the concert hall that used to be a church (the St. Augustine’s Church). He was inspired by the original paintings by Rubens, Jordaens and Van Dyck. These new art/alter pieces will be revealed in the last week of June. Luckily they are permanent so that’s another good reason to drop by Antwerp... May the creative force be with you!


Text by Miet Defillet

Pics by Niko Caignie


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