Time of the Giants

Traditional giant processions take place annually in countless Belgian villages and towns. It is an age-old phenomenon, much older than our country itself. Nevertheless, as soon as the giants dance somewhere to the tones of a local brass band, they still bring an intense joy to a contemporary audience. Giant processions have an indestructible, ecstatic sometimes even anarchic force!
I have been visiting tens of such processions over a period of five years (2014-2019) all around the country. In 2019 I have revisited all these places to photograph them while ordinary life was going on, without the giants.
The book is not a documentary about folklore in Belgium. For me, it’s not important to know which specific giant or which specific village you are seeing on the photographs. I am rather showing my very personal, imaginary vision on the socio-cultural phenomenon.
So for me, the book rather speaks about giants in a metaphorical sense. It’s about people who are able to feel like giants during this one, unique moment in the year: the annual procession. It is a feeling that everyone gets who attends a procession: locals, foreigners, visitors, old and young, you and me. In my eyes, we are able to feel like giants as soon as we feel a bond with each other.
Time of the giants: the time when people connect to each other, to their ancestors and their descendants, to their neighbours, to their village, to the Great Story they belong to.
A sense of belonging has become something precious in a society where people are living more and more isolated from each other.
In my eyes, the figure of the giant itself, can also be read (in a broader way) as a most beautiful, sovereign metaphor for the bond existing between people, for the sense of belonging ….

Photographer(s): Text:
David Nollet Pascal Verbeken
Format: Pages:
29 x 24 cm 64
Design: Images:
Grégoire Romefort
Publisher: Binding:
Cape of Good Hope Sewn
Printer: Printing:
Antilope De Bie, Duffel Duotone
Date: Edition:
October, 2020 300
Brussels, Belgium