Date: November 15th
Time: 7 – 9 PM
With: David Helbich and Rudi Laermans
Location: De Brandweer

How do we experience our body when we are at the theater, listen to a concert or attend a lecture? And how do we experience the entire body of an audience, in relation to ourselves and the work or the act? How do they all influence each other? We discipline ourselves, sit still, focus our hearing and view the performance. Yet, we are also distracted, fidgety, whispering to partners, and playing with candy wrappers. David Helbich’s long-term project Audience Observations plays with this interaction. By echoing this happenings, he demonstrates its performative qualities and thus ponders on the relationship between public spaces and audience participation.



David Helbich

David Helbich (b.1973) studied composition and philosophy in Amsterdam and Freiburg and lives and works in Brussels. His works take place on the theatre stage, on paper, online and in public spaces. They have been recently presented a.o. at Martin-Gropius-Bau (Berlin), Palais de Tokyo (Paris) and UnionDocs (New York). Helbich teaches at the International Summer Courses for New Music Darmstadt. He is the author of the bestselling photo books Belgian Solutions. A recurrent interest is the understanding of an audience as active individuals and the search for an opening up of experiences in an artistically restricted space.

Rudi Laermans

Rudi Laermans (b.1957) is professor of social theory a the University of Leuven, where he previously directed the Centre for Sociology of Culture. He is also involved in the theoretical program of the international dance school P.A.R.T.S. (Brussels) and was a regular guest lecturer at several art academies (a.o. in Rotterdam (the Netherlands), Malmö (Sweden) and Copenhagen (Denmark)). His current research focuses on the notion of the subject and the theme of agency, related to the concept of anonimity. In 2015 he published Moving Together, a study on contemporary dance.

What is Training the Senses?

Knowledge is not only acquired visually at schools through language and text books. Learning involves all of our senses: we learn by listening, tasting, smelling, touching – and even by using our intuition. Through Training the Senses participants explore and discover a new vocabulary for all their senses and a new way to transmit experience and acquire knowledge.
Training the Senses is a ongoing series by Marres, that avoids any division between the speakers, performance and the audience. Everyone is welcome to join.