Ghent: How to Live Together
A Season of Truth and Reconciliation

A series of activities organised by Grace Ndiritu at Kunsthal Gent in the context of an ongoing research project in collaboration with Julie Van Elslande, Caveat’s legal specialist.

07/09 – 10/12/2021

Kunsthal Gent, Ghent

Last year the Province of East Flanders and Woningent announced its plans to its sell part of the building complex of Het Pand and Kunsthal Gent. In response, Grace Ndiritu has immersed herself in the history of this former monastery and its users, proposing a series of activities at Kunsthal Gent which can be discovered throughout this autumn. The aim is to find a peaceful resolution in the framework of a Truth and Reconciliation process. Furthermore, the artist is examining how the site of the former Caermersklooster, where the interests of the different people and institutions who use or own the site are in conflict, can serve as a model for the practice of commoning.

There have been different points in history in which inhabitants have used the space as a place for living, spiritual practice, and for sharing intellectual and artistic ideas; particularly in the 15th century, the 1970s, and in the present-day form of Kunsthal Ghent and the Pandemisten occupation. An expanding archive covering the different periods of its occupation will be presented in Kunsthal Gent throughout this autumn.

Events are free (except the screening with Art Cinema OFFoff), but limited in numbers. Please register in advance via the link at Kunsthal Gent.

Ghent: How To Live Together, is a project in the framework of Kunsthal Gent Development Program, in collaboration with Caveat, Jubilee’s collective research project into the ecology of artistic practice. It is part of Ndiritu’s ongoing body of work Healing The Museum.

Programme September – December

Tuesday 7th September – 7pm to 9.30pm
A Therapeutic Townhall Meeting

In this playful performance, Grace Ndiritu will use meditation, letter writing and word-play to collectively unpack what the Truth and Reconciliation process means in the context of the ongoing dispute over the Caermersklooster site.

Language: English

Monday 18 October – 7pm to 9pm

Findings: A Night of Revelations

At this related event, SOgent will present the findings of Miss Miyagi, an urban design company who were hired by the City of Gent in 2019 to do research on the Het Pand site and develop scenarios for its future use. Grace Ndiritu and KHG will give a short talk to contextualize how this event fits within the wider aims of the Season of Truth and Reconciliation.

Monday 25th October – 8pm to 10.30pm
Contested land and Indigenous land rights

Screenings by OFFoff Art Cinema, curated by Grace Ndiritu and Jubilee. Including In ‘t Patershol (1977) and The Last Movie (Dennis Hopper, 1971).

Language: English

Tuesday 2nd November – 7pm to 9pm (doors open from 6pm)
Local Knowledge

A fascinating talk by local residents sharing their personal archives and stories of living in Patershol. With Norbert Detaeye (Dekenij Patershol), Luc Rogiest (Pandinist in the 70ies), Emilie De Vlam (current Pandemist). From 6 pm onwards, the archival presentation about the monastery (gathered by Grace Ndiritu and Jubilee) is open for a visit.

Thursday 25th November – 7pm to 9pm
Holistic Reading Room

Group reading of excerpts from Giorgio Agamben’s philosophical book on the law of living together – The Highest Poverty: Monastic Rules and Form-of-Life (2011), which brings us back to the earliest habitation of the Caemersklooster and investigates the dialectic between rule and life. The reading will be interspersed by silent meditation breaks led by Grace Ndiritu, and contextualized by the research on previous uses of the building, ‘the archive’ currently at view at Kunsthal. Event is free but limited in numbers. Register here

Language: English

Doors open at 6pm to see the research archive designed by Grace Ndiritu, in collaboration with Jubilee.

Friday 10th December – 7pm to 10pm
Public Debate: Commoning, Property Law and Indigenous Land Rights in the Belgian and Global Context

A public debate with Prof. Marie-Sophie De Clippele (Université Saint Louis, Brussels), historian Rafaël Verbuyst (Universiteit Gent) and social urban planner Jorik De Wilde (Universiteit Gent) about commoning, the indigenous perspective on shared resources and the development of cultural heritage sites globally. What can Ghent learn from this in relation to the history and social planning of Paterhol up to the present day the sale of Het Pand? Moderated by artist Grace Ndiritu.

Doors open at 6pm to see the research archive designed by Grace Ndiritu, in collaboration with Jubilee.


Read more at Kunsthal Gent