10 · 27 Jun 2021

ARTEFACT 2021: Wired for Empathy

General info

WE-SA: 14:00 → 22:00
SU-TU: 14:00 → 19:00

Location: STUK

Free entry

Artefact is an exhibition and festival on the crossroads of contemporary visual arts, current events and societal challenges.

Recent developments in biology and neurosciences agree: We, as human beings, are exceptionally well equipped to walk through life as empathic beings. Yet, increasingly it is said we find ourselves in an empathy crisis; a widespread lack of empathy in our society.

Through the artworks of +/- 20 international artists, Wired for Empathy explores the contemporary role and meaning of empathy: How can we understand empathy today? Who asks empathy from whom and what does that say about contemporary power relations? Which evolutions within society strengthen or undermine our capacity for empathy? How can we relearn/train empathetic strategies and behaviors? And is the concept of empathy limited to human relations, or can we expand the notion to involve relations to other living creatures?
The artists and their works in this exhibition address and challenge you to understand the other’s perspective and share their emotions. Deploying different artistic strategies; from language and visuals to the creation of participatory or immersive situations, they, in their own way, speak about care, action for kindness, and the mending of the social fabric.

With work by a.o. Anouk De Clercq, Khaled Barakeh, Helen Cammock, Daria Martin, Claudia Fontes, Charline Tyberghein, Elliott Erwitt, Tom Callemin, Ben Thorp Brown, Eva Kot’átková, Georgie Pinn, Suzanne Lacy, Alexandra Leyre Mein, Francesca Grilli, Ugo Rondinone and Peter Aers.

Artefact involves more than a contemporary art exhibition. Inspired by the theme of Wired for Empathy, Gilles Helsen curated an ARTEFACT SOUND program focusing on how playing music together can stimulate our empathic capacities. In his program, he brings together musicians from entirely different artistic and cultural backgrounds. Podcasts, workshops, lectures and films, in addition, allow you to engage with the concept of empathy in yet another way. More information about the Artefact program will be made available at artefact-festival.be throughout the Spring season.

WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE FLEMISH GOVERNMENT, THE CITY OF LEUVEN AND KU LEUVEN (ART & SCIENCE).