Triennial Bruges

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Bruges Triennial

Contemporary art and architecture in the historic centre of Bruges. The Triennial brings to Bruges a selection of inspirational and celebrated artists and architects from home and abroad who form a trail through the city with installations, videos, images and other media.

Pre-Triennial 2017

July 1st - September 10th, 2017


This summer, Pre-Triennial 2017, art and URB EGG-café can be found in the park area between the railway station and the Boeveriepoort, adjacent to the water.

Again an unknown patch of green will be transformed into an open, inviting  and hospitable summery spot leading up to Bruges Triennial 2018: Liquid City.



During the Pre-Triennial 2017 you may also expect a performance by the internationally renowned artist and architect Tomás Saraceno (Argentina, 1973). Keep an eye on our social media, for his solar-powered sculpture can be displayed only when the weather is suitable.

Liquid City 2018

May 5th – September 16th, 2018
Art trail in the historic centre of Bruges  


The world is in transition. Long-established views and lifestyles are coming under pressure. The second edition of the Triennial examines the future of a city like Bruges, focusing on the role of those who live in our ever-shifting society. A state of constant flux, driven by variation, pluralism and ambivalence can lead to uncertainty and even fear. But the Bruges Triennial 2018 adopts the opposite stance as a safe beacon, a fluid city, open and involved, the engine of social, cultural and political change. Bruges as a place where diversity leads to encounter. A seedbed for innovation in an urban context.

Just as the medieval burgher of Bruges was actively involved in shaping his city and council, the modern-day citizen is invited to share dreams, desires and experiences about communal life in Bruges. The temporary, shared and hospitable spaces which will provide a platform for the Bruges Triennial 2018 will stimulate interaction and help lay new foundations for the city. The fluid city, literally surrounded by water that once accounted for Bruges’ world fame, will become a metaphorical Liquid City. Fluidity, transition, influx, exchange, an uninterrupted artistic movement that gently ripples its way through the city, making the occasional wave. Panta Rhei. Everything and everyone is constantly changing.    

Pre-Triennial 2016

  • HEHE
  • HEHE
  • HEHE

HEHE "take away air"

1 July 2016 - 11 September 2016

In the summer of 2016, the artists’ collective HeHe had tower shapes made of galvanized tubing from the gate spill out onto the grass. Fused together as two half-moons, it resembled a giant unpolished diamond.

On show in Gentpoort were small-scale installations which illustrated the fragility of our climate and in particular the role man has played in making it so vulnerable.   

  • URB EGG-Café
  • URB EGG-Café
  • URB EGG-Café


1 July 2016 - 11 September 2016

In 2016, the URB EGG-café was the ideal place to take the weight off your feet during your visit to Bruges. The carbon-neutral café was built entirely of temporary containers and the sun panels on the roof provided the energy to run it.   


On five Sundays, renowned local restaurants provided an affordable dish from their kitchen.


12.00 - 18.00H
free entrance
€10 per dish

10 JUL

​De Republiek

24 JUL

De Kaas-connaisseur

07 AUG

La Bouffée 
​Resto Nous
De Mess

28 AUG


04 SEP

NXT Door 
​Bonte B.

Close calendar


  • 10 • 01 • 2017

    Zygmunt Bauman deceased

    Yesterday, the renowned Polish-British philosopher and sociologist Zygmunt Bauman (°1925, Poznan) has died in the city of Leeds at the age of 91.
    His influential writings such as Liquid Modernity (2000), Liquid Life (2005), Liquid Fear (2006) and Liquid Times (2007) sum up the modern world as what he called ‘Liquid Modernity’.
    Many of his books were an important source of inspiration to the development of the ‘Liquid City’ theme of the Triennial 2018.
    The Triennial team wants to express their condolences and wish strength to his relatives.

  • 9 • 01 • 2017

    Lawrence Weiner wins Wolf Prize

    Winners of the world-renowned and prestigious Wolf Prize were announced on Tuesday. In the arts, the prize will be awarded to the American artist Lawrence Weiner (participant of the closing debate Triennial Bruges 2015) and Laurie Anderson, for being “radical avant-garde artists” at the heart of their work and an inspiration to future artists. Congratulations!

  • 18 • 11 • 2016

    Lecture Atelier Bow Wow

    Yesterday Yoshi was in Belgium and spoke in Bozar about his project 'Canal Swimmer's Club' for Triennial Bruges 2015. We are proud that this work of art, realized in collaboration with architectural firm Dertien12, may still be in the spotlight!

  • 17 • 11 • 2016

    Jan Gehl - 'Cities for People'

    Danish architect and professor Jan Gehl spoke on the academic opening of the Triennial in 2015 about the sustainability of cities and public space. 
    His inspirational book 'Cities for People' is now also available in Dutch. 'Steden voor Mensen' is published by Vanden Broele in Bruges.

  • 15 • 11 • 2016

    The vegetable garden boxes are doing well!

    When the Triennial Bruges 2015 came to an end, we had to find a new home for the twenty vegetable garden boxes at the EcoHuis pop-up. Today, they are being used by the residents of a number of Bruges city quarters, who are all happy to help!

  • 22 • 08 • 2016


    Those of you who were in Nantes this summer may have come across an old acquaintance. First commissioned by Triennial Bruges 2015, HeHe’s Undercurrent was on show there in the moat at the Château des Ducs de Bretagne. In idyllic surroundings where there is little if any trace of the city’s industrial and technological revolution, Undercurrent makes a visual and auditory impact. The work sets you thinking... about our massive use of energy, our energy resources  and our changing energy needs, about light and noise pollution, and the demand for sustainable towns and cities.  

  • 11 • 08 • 2016


    After a month we have counted more than 2,000 visitors to Gentpoort (Ghent Gate). The combination of longer opening hours and the installation of contemporary art has attracted 40 times more visitors.

    The Pre-Triennial at Gentpoort is open to visitors free of charge until Sunday September 11th. As a bonus, the roof affords a marvellous view of Bruges city centre.

  • 10 • 05 • 2016


    We have just learned of the death of Ignace Bernolet, the driving force behind much of the activity on Bruges’ contemporary art scene, teacher at the Stedelijke Academie and respectful admirer of early art and heritage with which he regularly conducted a dialogue. 

    Our condolences to his next of kin, friends and pupils.  

  • 4.05.2017 VACANCY Read more >
  • 10.01.2017 Zygmunt Bauman deceased Read more >
  • 9.01.2017 Lawrence Weiner wins Wolf Prize Read more >
  • 18.11.2016 Lecture Atelier Bow Wow Read more >
  • 17.11.2016 Jan Gehl - 'Cities for People' Read more >
  • 15.11.2016 The vegetable garden boxes are doing well! Read more >
  • 22.08.2016 ‘UNDERCURRENT’ IN NANTES Read more >
  • 11.08.2016 40 TIMES MORE VISITORS Read more >

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It was 40 years since the last triennial of contemporary art and architecture was mounted in Bruges. Several artists, including the Norwegian Anne Katrine Senstad, Austrian Sam Auinger & American Bruce Odland and the Japanese architects collective Atelier Bow-Wow, left a trail through the historic centre. The theme was the growth of urbanization.   

The artistic direction of the Bruges Triennial 2015 was in the hands of Till-Holger Borchert and Michel Dewilde.

BRUGES 2015 site



Concert Hall Bruges
15 October 2015
Laurence Weiner, Till-Holger Borchert and Michel Dewilde

Lawrence Weiner is the ‘grandfather’ of conceptual art. His work can be seen in (among other places) Middelheimpark in Antwerp.

He tends to work with short sentences, which he has reproduced as large-format typographic texts. As his work usually occupies the public space, he is well placed to debate the place and impact of art in the public space with Till-Holger Borchert and Michel Dewilde. 

View the closing debate



Interview with Johan Debruyne and Daan Rau

In your opinion is there a gap between the Triennial premise and its perception and realization? Interviews with Johan Debruyne, critic H ART, Magazine for Contemporary Art, and Daan Rau, essayist OKV, Magazine for Art and Heritage. 

‘About an Exhibition’ – Daniël Dewaele

Watch the interview



Interview with some inhabitants of Bruges

Interviews with the prioress, the attendants, the protesters, the tradespeople, the guides, those responsible for the horse-drawn carriages, the tourist busses, the boats,... and the ordinary man in the street. The concept of the Triennial is Bruges as a Megapolis. A rather intimidating idea in the context of modern-day Bruges. 

‘About an Exhibition’ – Daniël Dewaele

Watch the interview



Interview with Till-Holger Borchert and Michel Dewilde

Interview with the curators about the concept and making of Triennial Bruges 2015.

‘About an Exhibition’ – Daniël Dewaele

Watch the interview



Interviews with Nathan Coley, Rainer Ganahl, Bijoy Jain (Studio Mumbai), Nicolas Grenier and Romy Achituv.

Interviews with some artists about their work for Triennial Bruges 2015.

‘About an Exhibition’ – Daniël Dewaele

Watch the interview


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Pictures by Sarah Bauwens, Matthias Desmet, Chente De Waele, Isabelle Matthys & Aäron Maes