Esch2022 presents its partners on the programme of exhibitions in the Möllerei, Esch-Belval – Vincent Crapon: “The Möllerei is a place for encounter and discovery”


Vincent Crapon is responsible for the coordination of the visual art exhibitions presented in the Möllerei in Esch-Belval. Before joining Esch2022 – European Capital of Culture he has worked at Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean where he has organised exhibitions in collaboration with the Museum Brandhorst in Munich, the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and the Musée des arts et métiers in Paris among others. In this interview, he tells us more about three of the key Esch2022 projects shown in the Möllerei from February till November 2022.

Next year, Esch2022 will present three major exhibitions organised in collaboration with the ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, the HEK (House of Electronic Arts) in Basel and Ars Electronica in Linz. What makes these collaborations important and what is your role?

These collaborations are unique on many levels. Firstly, our collaborators are real pioneers with unmatched expertise and knowledge in the fields of contemporary and media arts. Secondly, even though they know each other very well, this is the first time they are working together so closely. Over the past year we have been focusing on how their exhibition projects thematically and spatially fit together before fully immersing ourselves in the production process. My job is to oversee and facilitate their work while liaising with the rest of the Esch2022 team.

These three partners are organising exhibitions in the Möllerei, a special and important building at the foot of 2 retired blast furnaces in the former Belval steel plant. What makes working in this building so special and challenging?

It is a very impressive building, and unlike many industrial halls the Möllerei is not as empty and not as spacious as one might think from the outside. In fact it is a gigantic machine filled with several ore silos and a dense network of walkways and conveyor belts. Some of this equipment has been kept in place and this creates a very special atmosphere. One of the main challenges is that the building is undergoing major refurbishment to make it safe, accessible to visitors and suitable to show artworks. We have had to rely on 3D modelling and often imagination to find the ideal locations for many of the artworks in the exhibitions.

What are the exhibitions about?

The exhibitions touch upon various themes: the rethinking of the idea of identity in the Information Age, the complex relationship between human activity and the ecosystem, and the urgent necessity for novel and creative approaches in the field of technology and industry. The themes are drawn from lived experiences and are relevant to every one of us.

Why did Esch2022 chose to present media art in the Möllerei?  

Media art refers to artworks and artistic practices that use media technologies in their making and/or presentation. And can also refer to artworks and artistic practices that explore and question the impact of media technologies on societies and our world. This makes media arts particularly relevant when talking about our current times and the challenges that lay ahead. The Möllerei architecture is unique, and as an exhibition space as it nods to the past, whilst permitting the artworks to stand out and question the future.

What would you like to tell the future visitors?

Everyone can enjoy these exhibitions! The ZKM, HEK and Ars Electronica have chosen artworks that show how art, science, technologies and humanities are strongly interconnected and dependent on each other. With the physical presence of the past through its impressive architecture becoming home to the works of some of the most fascinating artists and thinkers working today — the Möllerei is a place for encounter and discovery.