Villanella is an art house for children (5-14) and youngsters (15-25) specialised in the production and presentation of contemporary arts, mainly theatre, dance, literature and music. Villanella uses different strategies like festivals, happenings, workshops, an art contest. An important part of the work is realised outside the official art institutes.
Since 2011, Villanella operates from within in DE Studio, a historical building in the heart of Antwerp.
We focus on children and youngsters and work together with different organisations in different fields, throughout the country be it economic, social, welfare or cultural. We firmly believe that arts should be a lively, dynamic, accessible source of energy for everybody.
We freely mix genres, disciplines and generations in unexpected combinations or surprising projects. That resulted in succesful literary evenings (De Nachten, last edition 2011), socio-artistic projects to connect people in vulnerable neighbourhoods (HOTEL IDEAL, 2001) and ongoing artistic trajectories for children and young, aspiring artists (Kunstbende, Villanova)
SOME OF OUR KEY-PROJECTS:
KUNSTBENDE, literally a gang for the arts, is a yearly ‘competition in arts’ for young people between 13 and 19 in Flanders and Brussels. Kunstbende shows the world how authentic, original, different and rich young culture can be. It aims to give professional support for every kind of artistic expression of young people, as long as it is their choice and realisation. Young people can participate in different categories but the main message is, that anything goes. Kunstbende wants to be a social as well as an artistic activity, and believes firmly that both fields can meet in perfect harmony.
VILLANOVA is Villanella’s yearly artistic incubator for young performers, illustrators, artists, directors or theatre buffs, between 16 and 26 years old. Each year, since 2010, Villanella selects a group of young artistic talent to produce their work, shown at the annual Villanova Festival at the end of August. As a house for young creatives, it is important for us to give them, our artistic future, a first stage to experiment.
CLUSTERS is a project to stimulate discussion amongst secondary school students about about the arts, politics, Europe, immigrants, while seeing performances, films and presentations. Clusters, an updated version of an old Greek forum for youth of today. Villanella has organised such projects about religion, good food, fair fashion, politics and sex.
FESTIVALS are at the heart of DE Studio, the home that Villanella shares with other local cultural organisations. We invite young creates to develop festivals in the spirit of our house. That collaboration has resulted in succesful artistic party concepts (Leave Us at Dawn), a highly regarded festival about graphic novels (Grafixx) and a bi-annual festival about food (Krachtvoer)