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.


At the end of September 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
Arts trail in the historic centre of Bruges  

Curators Till-Holger Borchert and Michel Dewilde have released the names of the artists and architects taking part in Bruges Triennial 2018, the contemporary art and architecture trail in the historic city centre.

With Liquid City – Vloeibare Stad as the theme of Bruges Triennial 2018, artists and architects from around the world will gather in Bruges and leave their mark on the public space. The Polish-born British sociologist and philosopher Zygmunt Bauman (1925-2017) studied the globalizing society and came to the conclusion that change is constant and relentless. Long-established ideas and ways of life are coming under pressure. This globalization causes the “liquid society”, which engenders a number of threats.  

A state of constant flux, driven by variation, pluralism and ambivalence can lead to uncertainty and even fear. But Bruges Triennial 2018 adopts the opposite stance as a possible beacon, a fluid city, open and involved, the engine of social, cultural and political change. Bruges as a creative melting pot where diversity leads to encounter. A seedbed for innovation in an urban context. With their artistic and architectural installations, the artists participating in Bruges Triennial 2018 | Liquid City – Vloeibare Stad create hospitable public spaces in the inner city. The temporary modifications they make to lesser-known and iconic places in the historic cityscape open up new opportunities for encounters for residents and visitors alike.

Invited international artists and architects like Jarosław Kozakiewicz (PL), Wesley Meuris (BE), Renato Nicolodi (BE), Nle – Kunle Adeyemi (NG-NL), OBBA (KR), Roxy Paine (USA), John Powers (USA), Raumlabor (DE), Rotor (BE), Ruimteveldwerk (BE), Tomás Saraceno (AR), SelgasCano (ES), Studio KCA (USA), Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (IR) and Peter Van Driessche – Atelier4 (BE) are designing installations, videos, sculptures and works in other mediums for the arts trail through the city.

An exhibition of visionary architectural models, a cooperation project with FRAC Centre Orleans curated by its director Abdelkader Damani, finds a temporary home in the church and garden of Bruges’ Grootseminarie or Large Seminary. 

Press file

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


  • 27 • 07 • 2017

    GOLD GUIDES ME...after Bruges now in Oslo

    Øya festival August 8-12, Oslo, Norway

    Kunst på Øya proudly presents GOLD GUIDES ME by Anne Katrine Senstad. The text based light sculpture serves as a welcoming statement above the festival entrance area. The monumental site specific light and text based sculptural work was initially installed on the roof of the Gistfabriek as part of the inaugural Bruges Contemporary Art and Architecture Triennale in 2015.

    GOLD GUIDES ME is part of a larger project by Anne K. Senstad entitled “Capitalism in the Public Realm”, that examines ethics and the public space. The statement leads us to contemplate financial and political economics, greed, ethics and western values systems. What happens when we exchange GOD with GOLD?  When our inner compass is no longer guided by collective or spiritual values, but the desire for individual wealth, power and ownership

  • 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.  

  • 27.07.2017 GOLD GUIDES ME...after Bruges now in Oslo Read more >
  • 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 >

Do you want to stay informed?



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