At V-Fest Brazilian performance artists Helena Araújo will perform My gentle wild squirts. A piece which inhabits spaces between dance, theater, poetry and performance. It dares to bring out the full potential of the feminine voice and its vulnerability, kink, power and sensitivity. It attempts to exceed the muting stamps put out by society, letting all that has to come out, be out. Helena investigates its roots towards her own essence by singing and growling, offering an emotional feast which spills into a transformative and raw performance.
In my gentle wild squirts Helena expresses Radical Softness* with finding the empowerment of being hyper dramatic, hyper emotional and hyper sexual. The audience is invited to a strident cave where imagination flows like water. It gets yumi wet in all senses and Helena goes exploring the many voices that come through. She asks for her Goddess' support and a little bit of kinkness, Goddess of it all becomes a very dominant figure. All is an attempt to challenge any considered norm of beauty, femininity and harmony and it results in a very visceral exchange with the space, Goddess and everyone around, a gummy reverberation until we touch. My gentle wild squirts is a collaboration together with soundartist Marnix van Soom and goddess Karina Villafan.
*Radical Softness is a term coined by the artist Lora Mathis as a response to the pervasive control of patriarchy on shaming things that are thought to be excessively sensitive, emotional or related to femininity. It carries the conviction that sharing your own feelings and desires unapologetically is actually a political move, and a way to install care in spaces and relationships.
Helena Araújo is a Brazilian dance and performance artist based in Brussels, Belgium. She interprets works, creates her own and shares her practices with workshops. She also writes poems and recently started writing songs. She believes in the potential of diverse expressions and collaborations or anything in between that constantly redefines itself and makes space for the poetic and political to intertwine.
Marnix van Soom is a Belgian musician, producer and researcher living in Brussels. He plays the drums in several projects, which include the acclaimed Belgian band Tin Fingers. He has had the pleasure of performing on many iconic stages in Belgium, from AB to Rock Werchter. He also loves the world of contemporary performance and has collaborated many times with one of its most scenic creatures, the artist Helena Araújo. His latest production with her, my gentle wild squirts, premiered at Moving Futures festival. Next to his artistic work, he is also a full time scientist at the Artificial Intelligence Lab at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
In German language, the word „Scham“, shame, is also the word for the female reproductive organ known as the vulva and the vagina. This puts everyone with a vulva in a place of repression, right from the start. Are there useful and maybe even positive aspects of shame, not only connected to the vulva? Hiding, protecting, revealing, showing oneself and the "gaze of the other" – how can one reclaim the power of shame? Shannon Soundquist plays an experimental live-set accompanied with spoken word.
Antje Meichsner/Shannon Soundquist is a sound artist, art film maker and radio producer. She works conceptually with sound, text, graphics and typography. Her sound works are based on the deconstruction and reconstruction of language material that revolves around the subject's condition in society and which she confronts with electronic sounds. Her works are both installative/audio-play-like, performative and and she also produces art films. In 2020 her radio play "Genauso bloß anders" about a female position in the punk scene was published at DEUTSCHLANDFUNK.
Maja Irene Bolier is a Dutch/Australian artist. She works with film, installations, collages, writings and performance. Her work is an exploration of desire, identity and warped sensuality crushed under the ever present weight of half forgotten childhood memories.
She will exhibit her collage works and reads from her latest publications.
Maja’s collage works are a celebration of the human form, intertwined with forces of nature. Erotic photography is combined with nature photography, evolving the whole into colorful, exotic new compositions. Fragmented bodies, parts intertwining, the touch of many hands… where does one shape end and the other one start?
I hope you like pink…! Karlijn de Groot is a video- and performance artist and works inspired by V-Fest on a new video performance. A personal body exploration that finds itself somewhere between a magic show, a travel documentary and an afternoon in a bouncy castle with Gaudi and Dali. An absurdist, positive search for a connection with her own body, one she was never taught to make in a healthy way. She’s about to fix that.
Karlijn de Groot is a DIY traveler and explorer and works around themes involving sexism, racism, activism and the environment.
Anne Exoo is the creative brain behind Kutjeskracht (Pussypower). Especially for V-Fest she created a unique, superlimited festivalshirt that she’ll be silkscreening live at the fest! Swing by her stand and buy one for a peachy-soft price! Faster, pussycat; come, come! Because these shirts are very limited and -like every vulva- each print is unique. More handmade Kutjeskracht products will also be available so be sure to check it out.
Leonie Schepers is a visual artist that embodies the evolving connection with her body in tufted tapestries. Leonie - like many people born with a womb- grew up with the idea that menstruation is something to be ashamed of, something to hide and be made invisible. In the process of finding a stronger connection with her body she learned about the different hormonal phases of her cycle and learned to appreciate them. Menstruation taught her how to listen to this part of her body and it became something to celebrate! Tonight, Leonie will exhibit large and smaller works that exuberate with color and joy in a new-found freedom!
Critical plights to view the commonplace in a different light, to fight assumption and misplaced foresight. Delivered through any of the senses, though rhyme is a preference of mine. In my limited time in the limelight, I will zealously share my insights and tonight I will cover the inside of the “female part” and how this part was medically uncovered, covered, covered up and recovered in the world’s leading human anatomy reference book: The Gray’s Anatomy.
Spoken word artist, designer and driven hobby-researcher Lydia performs spoken word, poetry and has a few things to say about the mystery of the clitoris. Pay attention, patriarchy!
For V-Fest Flux Wildly will prepare a special themed performance. Get ready to head into the vagina, where a live drawn visual story will unfold itself rapidly on canvas..! Get ready: this is Levi’s first hometown live art performance in 4 years.
Levi van Huijgevoort is a Live Action Painter, originally hailing from Tilburg but currently living in Dresden, where he switched his artist name to Flux Wildly. In combination with personal selections of ecstatic music, he has been creating works of live art on stages since 2007. He uses pastels and charcoal in both hands at once to make a picture come alive during his often fast-paced performances. Flux Wildly drives a punk-rock attitude flanked by intuition straight into the heart of the art.
Don’t QUIT when you can QUT!
V-Fest will peak with a real QUT set: Queer Uniting Tunes by DJ SPACE!BOY!
This dj, artist and radiomaker from Eindhoven, known for RaRaRadio and PlugIn City, brings us the best, rawest and most juicy queer dancetracks.
Meet Janine Ensslin, the ideal hostess for all occasions. From event to private party to V-Fest. Janine will always bring a personal touch! A touch with consent, of course. Janine opens V-Fest in a way only she can and will present each act to you on a silver platter.
During V-Fest ReclaimNL will be present to make sure everybody feels comfortable and relaxed. You could see them as Safe Space Guardians, they will be recognisable and are there for you whenever you want to share your thoughts or experiences with (sexual) intimidation, unacceptable behaviour or if you just want to have a chat. Together with them V-Fest and de Krakers Tilburg will secure your safety and comfort, but in case something would happen that makes you feel uncomfortable, ReclaimNL will of course be there for you. Together we will talk about what we can do for you to make the situation better.
ReclaimNL is committed to combating sexual harassment in the Netherlands. Something that started out of frustration, because there are still too many people who feel unsafe on the street. From a podcast about femicide to stickers against street harassment: ReclaimNL mainly develops creative campaigns for awareness and visibility. They hope that they will become increasingly known in the coming years, so that authorities know that they can contact them to stop sexual intimidation in an impactful way. Follow these amazing activists on Instagram @ReclaimNL and feel free to send them a DM for any questions, collaborations or if you want free stickers!