Helga Baert will be leaving Hiros upcoming April.
"The time has come for me to take my working life in another direction. I'm not planning on leaving the arts field but I'm taking some time to zoom out before choosing the next adventure I want to embark on," she explains her decision.
Helga Baert has been working as an arts manager since 2006. She founded the production structure Mokum in 2008 and merged it with Margarita Production into Hiros in 2013, of which she has been the general manager until today.
With her departure, a challenging and courageous trajectory of 12 years comes to an end. She made her mark as a dedicated and ever creative manager for independent artists, defending their position and creating a tailor-made structure that allows artists to develop their work.
"Since the new funding period (Hiros received 60% of the applied for funding from the Flemish Community for 2017-2021) we have been working hard on the transformation of Hiros to a smaller-scale structure.
The merge between Mokum and Margarita Production was never motivated by simple growth (more projects, more artist) but instigated by the need to deepen our support to artists, adapt our services to a changing art field, to develop (economical) strategies for the artist in times where project funding is under pressure, etc. It has always been our ambition to create sustainable working conditions for our team and the artists.
In analogy, the downsizing of Hiros couldn't be just a simple cut of artists, projects and personnel. A thorough reflection lies at the base of the new horizontal organigram. In times of precarious conditions for independent artists a qualitative and profound support is key.
The new organigram we developed gives oxygen to the structure and we have a new team that is eager to start. It feels like the right moment to make way for new voices."
Karen Verlinden will be the new artistic coordinator of Hiros. Nina Wabbes will start as a production manager and Anna Scholiers will take on communication. Shortly they'll be joined by a financial coordinator. The new team will continue the artistic commitments. Hiros will from now on support the trajectory and projects of about 10 artists.