Research, often limited to the empirical and scientific sphere, refers in fact to any gathering of data initiated by a question. This essential human activity focuses on the human and defies the world. "He who finds has badly searched", said the poet, resolutely focusing on the quest and not on the find. This is the characteristic of many contemporary artists: they explore the world in a personal and original way, their environment, themselves and their practice, and turn this exploration into a work of art.

Political decision-makers rely less and less on intuition and ideology, relying instead on research, expertise and scientific information. Thus, the Senate invites experts to nearly all its activities.

Luc Deleu (°1944, living in Antwerp) transposes Jules Verne's proposal – around the world in 80 days – into a project of systematic spatial analysis. He develops journeys to explore the world by circumventing it; his urban planning perspective takes shape through the societal, geographic and demographic data collected from the entire planet.

In his works, Jacques Charlier (°1939, living in Liège) emphasises the role (artistic) images can play in manipulation. However, using humour and a poetic approach, his work doesn’t become moralising. Thus, starting from the adjective ‘cerebral’, a term often used by art critics, he visualises how the painting refers to the term by adding a ceramic brain.

In the 1970s ORLAN (°1947, living in Paris) measured institutions, streets and squares bearing a masculine name using her own body. How many ‘ORLAN bodies’ do they represent? Her performances go against the saying "the human body is the measure of everything". In her ‘MesuRages’, she expresses her rage against those who do not recognise human difference.

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