Cifas - Performing art in the city and its fringes, a place of thinking and practice

Cifas is an organisation that puts the city at the heart of its activities, and trains future generations to take care of the city, a city at the crossroads of all disciplines.

 C’est pas là, c’est par là, Juhyung Lee, Signal #7, 2018 (photo: Bea Borgers).
C’est pas là, c’est par là, Juhyung Lee, Signal #7, 2018 (photo: Bea Borgers).

With the aims to accompany and support multidisciplinary artistic creation in public space, Cifas intends to continue to:

  • Develop artistic practice in public space
  • Open up horizons
  • Support artists and places developing new formats

With performing art in the city and its edges as a vector, Cifas plays a role in exploring and transforming public space into a space that is shared, united, plural and resilient.
We see all our actions as opportunities for exchange and transformation. We offer a space for risk and experimentation, for open enquiry and learning by doing. We believe that creation is a way of building relationships and bringing forward new collective ways of being in the world.

Festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers).
Festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers).

We value cooperation and the creation of shared imaginaries

We draw inspiration from our original environment and take our place in it: Brussels, a global city, a city of celebrations, a place where people, cultures and ideas come together, a place that encourages resourcefulness, hospitality and embracing multiplicity.

We value openness

We believe that everyone has important and valuable skills and knowledge to contribute.

We build equality and inclusion into everything we do

and we actively work to overcome barriers that prevent access to our programme and workshops.

We support cultural rights,

support emancipation and social justice and fight against all forms of discrimination, in line with our feminist, decolonial and inclusive values.

The project has 3 main focuses


Permanent education and co-learning

School of darkness, workshop by Sepake Angiama in 2019 (photo: Bea Borgers).
School of darkness, workshop by Sepake Angiama in 2019 (photo: Bea Borgers).
  • Workshops by and/or for artists.
  • Constellations: establishing artistic solidarity through the creation of a group of artists who will be accompanied throughout the year on projects in progress that deal in one way or another with the notion of public space (contextualisation, social justice, participation, insitu, etc.). We've come up with a series of Constellations, where artists work together on their prototypes to put their ideas to the test and fine-tune their methods.
  • Producers' Academy: a programme of workshops, discussions, meetings, reflections and sharing of experiences on international production and distribution, taking place alongside the Kunstenfestivaldesarts. Twenty international producers are selected. It's a real network of mutual aid, sharing skills and know-how, a moving toolbox connected to the individual and collective realities of culture and the performing arts.
Festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers)
Festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers)


A highlight of the year, a signature artistic programme

Feral is a festival that reflects on today's urgent political and social issues, and how artists take them into their own hands. It's a three-day programme of artistic interventions that use art to influence everyday life in Brussels. These interventions follow the rhythm of the seasons. They can take place on a boat, at the abattoir, in a shop or at a carnival. They are urban, interstitial, peripheral, natural and feral. They are all about performing art in the city and in its fringes, in other words, art as it questions the commonplace and its rough edges, urbanity and rurality, landscape and intimacy, the byways and the joys that propel us forward. The festival is co-organised with a range of Brussels' players (residents, partners) and beyond.

Field Notes by Phoebe Davies during festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers).
Field Notes by Phoebe Davies during festival Feral 2022 (photo: Bea Borgers).


A resource centre for performing art in the city, to circulate resources locally and internationally

Transforming the website into a resource centre, a curated library with articles, listings, contacts, networking... to make all the accumulated knowledge available to as many people as possible. The Cifasotheque will also include all the material that already exists via Klaxon and Cifas archives. We want to encourage these cooperative ventures and their contagion, making this plural knowledge visible and transmitting it: documenting, archiving, sharing; so that all this knowledge and practices (vocal, physical, writing games, collective intelligence techniques, rituals) are recounted, stored and can circulate via a digital platform, from the website and by integrating existing Klaxon articles in a referenced way.

We will draw upon open source tools and philosophy: inclusiveness, facilitating access to information, hacking methods and good practices, co-creation, respect for authors.

This resource base supports the co-learning and permanent learning focus of Cifas and extends the artistic programme (resonances, analysis, testimonies).

Cifas of today's ambition is above all to focus on contexts, new solidarities, holistic thinking and sensory exploration.

The Cifas is a member of the Réseau des arts de Bruxelles (RAB).

The Cifas is a programme conceived with the support of Cocof, FWB and Actiris.