Stepping away from the fast and furious fashion industry
Lizzy Vandierendonck is a fresh-faced, Ghent-based artist who graduated from KASK in June 2018. Amidst a pile of LPs, in the glow of a pink neon light bar, with soft music in the background and muted rain clattering on the windows, we found ourselves talking about camaraderie, specificity and the art of getting up and just doing stuff. It provides a momentary view into what keeps this artist busy.
Interview by Nanerle Ferket
Photos by Tiny Geeroms, shot in Ghent
Back then, I was attracted to the ability of photos to lie. I wanted to play with the concept of FOMO and confuse people
In June you graduated with 1:48 (nachttijd). Can you tell us what your graduation project was all about?
In 2017 I threw a party. I built decorations, there was music – a soundscape was provided by Lieven Martens, and Dennis Tyfus was on the turntables – and of course, I invited some friends. No friends, no party. Back then, I was attracted to the ability of photos to lie. I wanted to play with the concept of FOMO and confuse people. The idea was that the whole affair had to be destroyed. What happened was some of the people who knew of the plan started breaking things down. First, others got mad in response or were simply shocked, but in the end everyone was tearing the place up, only to band together and start building again. I had known I wanted to throw that party and afterwards I liked how things had gone down. It was just that I didn’t know exactly how to move from there and what to do with the space I had to fill afterwards for the presentation of my master’s project.
About that: I read that by re-using your materials from the party, you were recalling memories?
I did re-use the materials from the party, and I tried to rebuild the scene as it was left months before. I also made and played a mixtape based on what I remembered from that night. That way the audience, when entering my space, was visiting a recollection from the 2017 party. So I guess in a way my installation did recuperate memories from the party, but I’m not quite sure whether I would have described it like that myself, nor if that description covers what it was. I don’t particularly like abstract expressions, or flowery terms. I prefer specificity. In that sense, I’m happy that I’ve graduated. Talking about my work too much makes me lose focus; things often seem to go far more naturally when I just get up and do.
What are you working on now?
I get inspired by the night scene, by partying and by my friends. Don’t get me wrong: I enjoy paintings and sculptures but they don’t necessarily make me want to create things. I’m a doer, I like obtaining skills and working with my hands. During my master’s year I realised I was very interested in building scenery. My newest work is a project in which I am putting all of these aspects – music, friends, building things – together. Bar Camaraderie will be a one-night karaoke bar set in a night shop. The scenery will be crafted by myself and my friends. Guests can come and sing their favourite songs, while I’m directing the movement and placement of decorations and lighting. The experience is a real-life video clip, if you will.
I’m a doer, I like obtaining skills and working with my hands
Do you have any plans after that?
I’m planning on doing an internship for a stage builder to acquire some technical skills. I never really wanted to be an intern for artists because then you work for them. I want to work for me. I’m also thinking of opening my very own club. Recently, I went to ADAM in Brussels and visited Night Fever, an exhibition about club culture from the Sixties till now. I was very attracted to the forms and designs of the Seventies. When I went there, it suddenly dawned on me: maybe I should just get up and open a club myself. The nightclub as a concept, the culmination of all that inspires me today.