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Martine Pollier
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Voices of the Scandinavia Blocks

How does one orchestrate 220 owners?
20.04 2023
STAM - abdijrefter

In collaboration with:

With the support of:

What if a post-war apartment block with 220 owners needs to be climate-proofed? What is their relevance today? How does the ensemble connect to the new developments around the Dokken and Afrikalaan? And how can an energy-efficient renovation be done in an affordable way? TV Studio Tuin en Wereld – AgwA – Domus Mundi draws the concept for the future of the Scandinavia Blocks. The lecture will be preceded by an art project around this residential block by Timo Tembuyser and Naomi Steijger.

  • Intro
  • Timo Tembuyser and Naomi Steijger
  • Speakers
  • Studio Tuin en Wereld
  • AgwA
  • Domus Mundi

The individual resident and his individual housing unit is the focal point of the concept study for reconversion of a residential block with a shared ownership situation. How can attention be given to both the individual and the collective? From the micro-perspective of the resident, the study looks at housing quality, social-spatial improvement, method of approach, urban patch repair and the energy issue. A multidisciplinary team is drawing the concept for the future of the Scandinavia Blocks. Two architectural firms Studio Tuin en Wereld and Agwa are working together with non-profit organisation Domus Mundi. Domus Mundi wants to make qualitative and sustainable living, housing and (re)building possible for vulnerable groups by providing support in renovation and urban renewal.

Studio Tuin en Wereld (Studio Garden and World)

‘Between Garden and World’ is a book by Paul De Wispelaere (1928-2016). Throughout the novel, the world is contemplated and considered from a yard (a garden). At the same time, that garden is a part of the world. Something arises between garden and world. This “something,” this “between,” is as much a moment, a place and a relationship. Studio Tuin en Wereld approaches spatial “themes” from this particular multiplicity: space as moment, as place and as relationship.

Studio Tuin en Wereld was founded by Tomas Ooms and Annebel J.L. Courtens. Tomas studied architecture, literature, research methods and music. A lecturer at the Faculty of Architecture at the KU Leuven, he is promoter of the Incipient Raum Master Dissertation Studio. He is co-project leader of the academic design office and design studio REVAMP. He is also curator of the Craftmenship engagement at this faculty. In addition to being a practicing architect, he is a composer and performing musician. Regularly in demand as a juror, editor and co-editor.


Founded between 2003 and 2006 in Brussels, AgwA proposes an architecture that leaves room for the evolution of the building over time, and for its appropriation by its users. Their architectural practice reflects a social commitment and aims to respond to contextual, structural, programmatic, economic, human and environmental issues. AgwA was founded by Harold Fallon and Benoît Vandenbulcke.

Domus Mundi

Domus Mundi vzw wants to make qualitative and sustainable living, housing and building possible for vulnerable groups. The activities of Domus Mundi focus mainly on projects that help to improve the quality of life and housing in a neighbourhood or city through support in renovation and urban renewal.

Concrete Voices

Director Naomi Steijger (1994) and performer, singer & composer Timo Tembuyser (1991) are working on a metropolitan requiem. For each new listening performance in this series, they invite the residents of an apartment building in a different metropolis as co-makers and as a choir. They mapped the polyphony of the Ghent residential block through ‘BLOK | a requiem in major’, which came about as part of a city residency that Timo and Naomi did at Viernulvier Arts Center in Ghent in December 2018.

How to make a piece with 220 different voices?

We composed a requiem composed of the sounds, voices and stories of this building, and transformed the building into a choir. The apartments – as a symbol of the metropolis, so close together but at the same time so far apart. The choir – as an ode to “together,” to harmony, to the connection we seek with each other in the city. A requiem – as a resistance against the loneliness of society.
?Timo & Naomi?

Naomi Steijger (b. 1994) graduated from the Toneelacademie Maastricht’s directing program in the summer of 2019. During her graduation year, she followed the talent development program Oorzaken Academy of the NPO fund, where she developed a 5-part podcast series about voyeurism with the VPRO: Peeping Tom. In 2018, together with Timo Tembuyser, she won the NTR Podcast Prize for their podcast 88 woningraten….

Timo Tembuyser (1991) graduated from the performance course of the Toneelacademie in Maastricht in June 2019 and schooled as a singer within the Music Theater Department of the Rotterdam Conservatory (Codarts University for the Arts). Previously, he completed the Masters in Architecture & Urbanism at Ghent University in 2014 with a thesis on the triangulation between performer, audience and space – both within framed theatre spaces and in fluid urban contexts.

SkYline. Highrise in the Low Countries

Hans Wilschut

This lecture is in collaboration with the STAM and the *Ghent City Architect * as part of the expo SkYline. Highrise in the Low Countries.

You recognize people by their silhouette, cities by their skyline. In the expo ‘SkYline. High-rise buildings in the Low Countries’, STAM (Stadsmuseum Gent) challenges our – often casual – view of the city. What is behind the erratic lines of stone, steel and glass? And why do we keep building high, higher, highest? SkYline’ is an invitation to stand still and experience. Both inside and outside the expo. During lectures and a bicycle tour, among other things, you can delve deeper into the theme of high-rise. Do, Understand and Watch The SkYline: discover the full programme at ‘SkYline’ runs until May 21, 2023.