Scientists and artists are the visionaries of society. Every year KVS and VUB-weKONEKT organise Mindblowers and give the stage over to their voices and heartbeats. To be expected: Performances at the crossroads of art, culture and reflection.

From a shared fascination and responsibility for the city, KVS and VUB work together intensively. The multicoloured, multilingual city is a challenging laboratory for both institutions, a source of wonder, compassion, knowledge and exasperation. Together, we are convinced that connection is the answer for the future and that tomorrow’s society will not be created or built on the basis of one’s own convictions.


Book cover visual Mindblowers: where art and science meet

The book Mindblowers is structured around four themes: Resistance, Imagination, Time and Beauty. The 39 contributions from different artists and scientists are diverse and thought-provoking in form and content, ranging from recipes to letters, from articles to a photo-novella… We hope it blows your mind.

The four themes are the inspirational lenses through which we can discover new insights. Mindblowers aims to reconnect different disciplines, bridging sometimes disparate elements and bringing them back into proximity.” – Caroline Pauwels

Artists and academics have much in common. With passion and dedication, they look for languages for a possible future. That is why we set up this unique project from KVS together with VUB. It is wonderful that after four editions we have this beautiful reference book ready and can launch it now that Rector Caroline Pauwels is curator of the wonder at Theater aan Zee 2021” – Michael De Cock

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  • PLACE/SPACE – 2021

    Academics and artists claim their place on stage for an evening. They investigate the boundlessness and boundaries of space and place. In recent times, our space has become both smaller and larger: we were more confined to our homes than ever, but we could also travel further than ever to virtual and digital locations.

    Line-up: Seppe Baeyens, Rosamunde van Brakel, Irene Gutiérrez, Koert Debeuf, Karine Van Doninck, Lorent Saleh, ...
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  • BEAUTY – 2020

    What is beauty? What do we find beautiful, and how can beauty influence and improve our lives? Not only did everything take place on the outdoor square behind KVS, but this edition’s academics and artists tested, more than ever, the edges of their practice and challenged the audience. Tasting, smelling, hearing, seeing – all your senses were stimulated.

    Line-up: Ilse Smolders, Free De Backer, Peter de Cupere, Amira Daoudi, Laurent de Sutter, Koen Vanmechelen, Yassin Mrabtifi, Jean Paul Van Bendegem, Lisette Ma Neza , Thierry Boutemy, Jean-Charles Zaquine and Sayuri Nagoya.
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  • TIME – 2019

    Time is a fascinated thing that has been preoccupying artists and scientists for centuries. How times change, or how everything returns, what time teaches us, and how we can capture it in art or science.

    Line-up: Frank Scheelings, Niels De Winter, Jeroen Van Herzeele, Fabian Fiorini, Carme Portaceli , Luc De Vuyst, Hala El Moussawi , Mesut Alp, Fien Leysen, Mesut Arslan, Fredo De Smet, Les Mybalés, Jan Meeus & Lise Vermeersch, Bakkerij Charli, Atelier Dierendonck, Umamido, Fromagerie Catherine
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  • IMAGINATION – 2018

    An ode to the imagination. Academics and artists both work from a place of curiosity, wonder, freedom, creativity and critical thinking. Only by imagining and envisioning the impossible can arts and science create new horizons.

    Line-up: Mireille Hildebrandt, Moya Michael, Ana Naqe, Pieter Meurs, Vincent Ginis, Pieter and Johannes Genard, Pitcho Womba Konga, Emilie Grégoire and Jad Zeitouni, Ellen Vermeulen, Niels De Temmerman
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  • RESISTANCE – 2017

    The theme of the first Mindblowers is resistance. A fine selection of thinkers and artists from both Belgium and abroad presented their visions of resistance. What does that mean today? What has it meant and what can it mean in our future?

    Line-up: Rachida Lamrabet, Karen Celis, Pepijn Kennis, Wim Vandekeybus, Michel Maus, Anissa Boujdaini, Wim Distelmans, François Beukelaers, Benjamin De Cleen, Iman Lechkar, Sukina Douglas, Muziek door Junior Cesar en gasten 
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Mindblowers aan zee

Promotional visual Theater Aan Zee with guest curator VUB Rector Caroline Pauwels

TAZ (Theater Aan Zee) is a multi-day theatre and music festival in Ostend.   At more than fifty locations, TAZ presents performing arts, music and literature.

Our special editions of Mindblowers by the Sea (Mindblowers aan Zee) was entirely dedicated to ‘Marvel’ (de Verwondering), which is also the theme of the festival in 2021. And Ostend is the perfect location for new horizons …


Honoré d’O
Aminata Demba
Marc De Bie
Hala El Moussawi
Fien Leysen
Lisette Ma Neza
Michel Maus
Ana Naqe
Bahar Temiz
Stein Verrelst
Jean Paul Van Bendegem
Karine Van Doninck