The argos festival offers a stage to all kinds of artistic forms of expression in the realm of audio-visual media. Until this year the manifestation, which was started up in 1997, was labelled as the argos information days. Annually this event provided an overview of the output in new Belgian artistic audio-visual productions. Over the years what started out as a small-scale event blossomed into a manifestation with international recognition, an important date on the cultural calendar. As from this year the choice was made to include foreign programme sections alongside the Belgian ones, which resulted in an obvious name change into festival. The programme is spread over two locations: Cinema Nova and argos. In Cinema Nova an international selection of audio-visual art productions is shown. There are retrospectives, thematic programmes, as well as various performances that make use of multimedia. At argos the programme part AV-venue will take place, a temporary media library totally devoted to the Belgian production.

The argos festival holds the philosophy to show prominent international work, from an interdisciplinary and open concept. Invariably this concerns unconventional to innovative work, work with a personal signature, with a critical and reflexive attitude towards the media reality that surrounds us and the internet-based economy in which we live. Critical distance and socio-artistic commitment are essential to argos. The fact that the arts are no island is established this year in ’History of our Present’, brought together by Jayce Salloum. This programme in five parts offers an outline of recent Arab film and video work. The outset is to get another perspective on this region, all too often a one-sided light is shed on it by the Western media, reason for which it stays underexposed.
Another five-part series constitutes the retrospective devoted to the New York film and video maker Ken Kobland.
Apart from that some smaller thematic programmes pay attention to the recent Canadian video production. Next to film and video screenings there are performances by Scanner, Q-02, Stevie Wishart/Lisa DiLillo and Taxi Val Mentek, in which the relationship between music/ sound and image is being explored. The performance by the British-Swiss multimedia-hype Taxi Val Mentek constitutes the upbeat to a closing party in La Caserne. Their performance will be followed by a set with DJ Messieurs Delmotte (and his Recorded Orchestra from Liège).

At argos the information section on the new Belgian audio-visual production will take place faithful to custom. This year it was redubbed into ’AV-venue’. Like the previous years the accent here is on work that does not allow for easy categorisation, on experimental, self-willed, unconventional work, or work that explicitly spans a bridge to other art forms. No less than 250 artists will participate in this fifth edition. A media library formula allows for eight days of individual consultation of over 400 new productions (film, video, audio, CD-ROM, Internet...). Next to programming a festival entails encounters, social contacts, atmosphere... At argos a temporary bar-resto was set up to this effect.

Because festivals are by definition volatile calendar phenomena, argos pays a lot of attention to tracks of the memory. The productions screened at the AV-venue can still be consulted after the festival at argos. An embodiment of a different nature is offered by a catalogue in two parts, conceived as a reflexive component to the programme. Through essays the various programme section are further elaborated. Apart from that the publication is a useful work of reference to the recent production from our own country.


Ken Kobland, Landscapes of Desire  
  • Fri 05.10.2001 - Fri 12.10.2001
  • Practical info


    Cinéma Nova
    Arenbergstraat 3
    1000 Brussel

    Entrance fee: