in the Category: art

Five artists to watch at To Be Antwerp

Get ready because the sixth edition of To Be Antwerp awaits just around the corner. During the weekend of 26-28 November, the Theaterbuurt in Antwerp will become one big free exhibition with the work of 50 freshly graduated master students from the Royal Academy of Antwerp and St Lucas School of Arts Antwerp. We have selected five upcoming talents that you cannot miss.

Text by Maya Toebat

Hussein Shikha + June Osselaer
@hussein.shikha / @hosseleir

This year, the house style of To Be Antwerp is designed by Hussein Shikha and June Osselaer. The two master graduates in graphic design from the Royal Academy of Antwerp have created a black and white pixel-based poster and logo. The unfinished nature of the pixels makes it seem as if it is a screenshot of a moving image - may be the reaching hands on the poster will touch in the end.

Hussein Shikha also exhibits his own work at KAVKA Oudaan. He was born in Iraq, where his two aunts gave him drawing lessons. After he moved to Belgium, his home country remained a great source of inspiration. For example, for his thesis, Shikha studied Iraqi tapestries which he turned into virtual imagery.


Shelsey Boermans

Only 22 and graduated with a master’s in applied arts from St Lucas, Shelsey Boermans is still searching and experimenting with her style. Bodies in all shapes and sizes are the main thread of her work, but she’s always looking for the right techniques to capture the atmosphere in an image. It can be watercolour just as it can be collage, monotype or even body scans. She loves to work manually and doesn’t mind if that means getting her hands dirty. Go check out her work at Gert Voorjans gallery or at the Sint Joriskerk.


Maarten Enghien & Inès Collin
@enghienmaarten / @inescollin

Graphic designers Maarten Enghien and Inès Collin, who studied at St Lucas, do not limit themselves to the boundaries imposed by a sheet of paper. In addition to flyers and posters, they have also made a fluorescent yellow installation in the past. What’s more, their style seems to follow the idea that art should not necessarily be beautiful. It’s wringing and at the same time industrially clean. It’s both digitally future-oriented and looking as if it comes from the 2010s. For To Be Antwerp, they are mapping their exhibition venue, The Other Space, based on a measuring system they invented themselves. Be sure to take a look.


Giorgia Galfré

Fashion students are also represented at To Be Antwerp. One of them is the Italian Giorgia Galfré, whose work can be spotted at Rebecca Verstraete Interior Design. In her Master collection Why aren’t Boots Called Italies?!, Galfré exposes Italian politics by using faded digital collages. It is a genderless collection that examines issues such as racism, xenophobia and toxic masculinity. At the same time, it is inspired by the idealization of the Italian woman, like Sofia Loren in 60s movies. And what’s especially cool is that the bold silhouettes are completed with ceramic accessories that Galfré has made herself. 


Assaf Hinden

After having studied in Tel Aviv, Hamburg and Jerusalem, Asaf came to Antwerp to refine his photography skills. And since photography is a medium of remembrance, he attaches great importance to origin and memory in his work. For his graduation project, A Parallel Chronicle, he delved into the art collection of the Jewish Mrs Budge, which was forcibly sold in 1937. Hinden reconstructs and manipulates a selection of objects from the auction catalogue, using techniques such as editing, archival raw materials, collages and 3D modelling imagery. His work is fascinating, boundary-crossing and can be viewed at Hilde Cornelissen Interieur.

To Be Antwerp
26-28 November - theatre area, Antwerp