2010 Huub DonkersHuub Donkers - Le Bleu du Ciel
Brussels, metropolis, the European and Belgian capital, with its Flemish and Wallonian region, 19 municipalities, districts, streets, neighbourhoods with endless diversity, with more than 150 nationalities. Brussels is a metropolis but divided into an upper and lower city in which there are large differences in social classes.

In modern times, the architecture made a strong mark on this metropolis. At the time of King Leopold II (1865-1909), planning ideas with uncompromising interventions, grids and structures where placed upon the existing urban fabric. It was within the vision of the genuine city. All these interventions where at the expense of the lower social classes, mostly in the lower city. It introduces the Brussels of the grand gesture, the Brussels of the diver.

As a counter-movement on this approach, I went searching for another Brussels, the other city, that of la dérive (Situationists International). With this point of view I cross the urban fabric, finding other ways of revealing itself. La dérive is a trial, a circuit of routes and public spaces, within the habitat of mankind, constantly in motion. This is the Brussels of surrealism, Brussels of the runner.

The plan is positioning itself within a vacuum, a void in the city center around the Ninove Gate at the junction of the inner ring and the channel Antwerp-Charleroi. A duel has been created, the battle between planner and genius loci, the diver versus runner. By making three incisions in the landscape, the context has been opened for a new filling in with urban elements like square, street and monument. The vacuum gets a right to exist again. Strongly bound with the genius loci and that of the context of the modern city a plan emerges with a critical view of on contemporary urban landscape.

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