I met CeePil last summer in Bristol, where he was painting the back of the legendary Tap and Barrel Pub for Upfest 2018 alongside Smok and ShitOne. When I knew I was going to travel to Ghent, I asked him to meet for an interview and he invited me over to DOK, an amazing factory-turned-cultural-center where we sat for a cup of coffee…
When I asked locals what’s giving Ghent its edge, they all replied that Ghent is a rebellious city. I’ve spoken with artists, students and middle-aged people from different backgrounds and interests and, although each one understood this trait slightly differently -stubbornness, vanguard, insurgency, critical thought, independence, unconventionality-, they all agreed in portraying Ghent as a city that can’t be -and won’t be- anyhow controlled.
Unlike many other cities, Ghent’s street art legacy developed from the bottom-up, rooted in the passion of local artists and their connections to international artists whom they invited to paint.
The Royals were bathing in Oostende since the 19th century, but this seaside resort on the Belgian coastline is even older: it was an ancient fishermen village, which rose to the status of town back in 1265.
More recently, Oostende is standing out thanks to an enticing programme of contemporary and urban art events. I was there to attend the street art festival The Crystal Ship and I made the most out of my week in Oostende by also doing some street-art-unrelated things, such as: