The Astronaut Metaphor is a three year programme of Netwerk Aalst in which a group of artists, curators, writers and researchers are invited to reflect on forms of governance whilst simultaneously infiltrating Netwerk Aalst’s programme and institutional model. The participants in the programme, the Bodies, are: Nick Aikens, Bianca Baldi, Jeremiah Day, Laurens Dhaenens, Dora Garcia, Agnieszka Gratza, Vanessa Joan Müller, Wendy Morris and Netwerk Aalst: Pieternel Vermoortel and Piet Mertens.
Pieternel Vermoortel: The bodies are an experimental format: a group of people meets over a series of gatherings envisioned and guided by curator Nick Aikens over the course of three years. The invited participants are artists, a curator, an art historian, a writer, … Their thinking forms an extended frame of reference for the institutional model of Netwerk Aalst. The bodies were brought into life as a way to decentralize power, and to allow for a plurality of voices to think, act and understand and form the institution. The bodies reflect independently and on their own terms on forms of governance and can infiltrate Netwerk Aalst´s programme and institutional model. The encounters are conceived as an opportunity to formulate visions – with the participants and in dialogue with and ultimately for the institution. The form these visions take is not pre-described but is formed over the course of the enquiring process. It is devised by artistic and collective thinking. More