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workspace for experimental music and sound art
17/06/2024 - 14/07/2024

My residency at Q-O2 in the summer of 2024 will mark the beginning of a new artistic research around the politics of exploring queer joy. The research is informed by experiences with complex trauma, a mental health condition that troubles one’s relation to their own bodymind as well as one’s relation to others. I want to focus on the healing –personal as well as sociopolitical– that can arise from the experience of joy. The research is meant as a deepening of the practices of writing, vocalization and music/sound that have been central in my work so far, by exploring their capacity to summon virtual voices or bodies (of sound). I’m interested in getting to know those yet unactualized, speculative bodies by understanding them as characters that can inhabit texts and songs.


Writing, singing and making music are now widely recognized therapies for complex trauma, also due to the work of psychiatrist and traumatic stress expert Bessel van der Kolk and his colleagues (The Body Keeps the Score, 2014). But while van der Kolk mainly focuses on personal healing, it is Black and queer feminist writers that emphasize the social and political healing inherent in the exploration of joy. For marginalized communities living with intergenerational trauma, joy as the practice of actively inhabiting one’s bodymind, owning the feeling of being alive that arises from deep and complex entanglements with others, is a political strategy, the very practice of freedom and liberation. It is the work of writers such as Audre Lorde, Maggie Nelson, Christina Sharpe, Alexis Pauline Gumbs and adrienne maree brown that therefore inspire and inform this research at its core.


Those writers made me realize how, for queer and other marginalized people, the possibility of experiencing joy also rests on our ability to care for and strengthen our communities. I’d therefore like to also use this first residency at Q-O2 as an opportunity to enter into dialog with Brussels-based artists-organizers that have been vital to the city’s queer and racialized artistic community and its exploration of joy.

Sebastian Dingens - WALKS
Pavel Tchikov 29/11/23
Nika Son - Scatter

Q-O2 is supported by the Flemish Community, VGC and the European Union
Koolmijnenkaai 30-34
B-1080 Brussels