Independent Books in Belgium An incomplete overview of the independent publishing scene in the Dutch-speaking part of Belgium

Belgium has a interesting and varied independent publishing scene. While these publishers are often part of an underground scene, it is striking that the work produced is of a more “upperground” quality. The underground scene from Belgium is different from what I saw in Belgrade, where the underground scene is much more DIY and for a smaller audience. Some art spaces listed bellow could be compared to Kvaka 22, but I also visited spaces in Belgrade like Kombinat and Matrijaršija, and I can’t find a Belgian equivalent for those.

Riot Bookshop – Art Paper Editions (Ghent)
Riot is a bookshop in Ghent that sells (Artist) books from numerous independent (international) publishers. The shop is initiated by the founders of Art Paper Editions, an independent publisher also from Ghent.

Het Balanseer (Ghent)
Het Balanseer is a publisher that is not focussing on gaining any profit. They publish poetry, essays, sound/music, fiction and visual books.

A design-duo that often designs publications for Het Balanseer are Ruttens-Wille (Ruud Ruttens and Jeroen Wille). They also design LP-covers, the magazine of underground-label KRAAK, etc.

Topo Copy (Ghent)
From the Topo Copy website: “Topo Copy is an ‘openlab-research-center’ for print, zines, paper, copy, ink and art … with a selfpublishing label & (zine-)library, activities such as workshops, lectures, interventions and expo’s.“ A great plus is that they print riso.

1e Verdiep (Ghent)
1e Verdiep is a graphic design company that is connected with a music label (EURO200) and a silkscreen studio (Camping Penrose). Their design is beautifully trashy and a great contrast with the previous publishers mentioned. This company is part of the underground art and music scene of Ghent.

Ultra Eczema (Antwerp)
From the website of Ultra Eczema: “Ultra Eczema commenced in 1997 with a fanzine and a compilation cassette.
Subsequently, it began to present events alongside the steady publication of books by its founder, Dennis Tyfus, and records by his friends, fellow artists, and occasional archival recordings.”

Smaller publishers/publications (Ghent)
Vrije Bijdrage Magazine (students from my school) A small format magazine, every edition has a certain theme and work from different people is collected. Vrije FB

The Collective Tieten met Haar (trans.: boobs with hair) and FB link

Liselotte van Daele designs visuals and also screen prints on clothes (the label is XOX)

Some interesting artist/designers
Kasper Andreasen
Sven Beirnaert
Joris Kritis
Julie Peeters`
Leen Voet
Gerard Herman

Art Spaces
In de Ruimte
De Koer

Dylan Belgrado is Erasmus student at our Faculty. She is student of Graphic Design, at University College Ghent. Dylan attended classes of Book Design 1 in first semester 2017/18.