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A bird’s-eye view

Abstract art, a bird's eye view

Reflections

Camouflage

Abstract art, a bird's-eye view

Museum of Ixelles, 1965. Felix De Boeck comes from under his church tower at Drogenbos, exchanges his clogs for city shoes and goes to this renowned museum, where a first retrospective is devoted to his oeuvre. 55 years later, again under the church tower of Drogenbos. About 50 works from the splendid collection of the Museum of Ixelles come to the FeliXart Museum. The pigeon of Felix De Boeck, which dates from 1927, is also part of the collection of the Museum of Ixelles. This pigeon, along with other abstract works, returns to her home in Drogenbos, at only 7 km from the capital, a bird’s eye view.

A bird's-eye view

The first steps to abstraction

After the war

Abstract now

A bird's-eye view

A bird’s eye view of the evolution of modernism in Belgium, with a special focus on abstract art. The works of the Museum of Ixelles as well as some of KMSKA enter into a dialogue with the works of Felix, who himself, throughout his long life, always followed his instinct of renewal and went through different art movements.

The story begins in a turbulent fin de siècle atmosphere, with a first generation of avant-gardists breaking with age-old realism and creating a new visual language in which form, colour and line are central. To this day, the search for breaking with conventions and for absolute purity remains central to artists.

The first steps to abstraction

A bird’s eye view of the evolution of modernism in Belgium, with a special focus on abstract art. The works of the Museum of Ixelles as well as some of KMSKA enter into a dialogue with the works of Felix, who himself, throughout his long life, always followed his instinct of renewal and went through different art movements.

The story begins in a turbulent fin de siècle atmosphere, with a first generation of avant-gardists breaking with age-old realism and creating a new visual language in which form, colour and line are central. To this day, the search for breaking with conventions and for absolute purity remains central to artists.

After the war

Rediscovery and new experiments

Abstract art remained in the margins for a few years, but returned to the forefront of the artistic breeding process after the Second World War.

Between 1945 and 1948, the Apollo Gallery in Brussels exhibited the work of young artists reflecting the new trends in Belgian art: ‘Young Belgian Painting’. The works reflect the multitude and diversity of the art movements of that period. A group of abstract artists gives a new impulse to this movement.

If the young artists were not already familiar with the work of the first generation of abstracts, they would certainly have become acquainted with them in the Antwerp artistic milieu around the group G58. In 1959 the exhibition ‘The first abstracts in Belgium’ opened in the Hessenhuis in Antwerp. A tribute to the pioneers of the first wave of abstract art, with works by Jozef Peeters and Felix De Boeck, among others. Old and new avant-garde united.

Abstract now

The artistic spectrum was widened at the beginning of the 20th century and constantly renewed in its formal forms of expression and themes. In the abundance of contemporary artistic creations in which each artist follows his own path, we have selected a few works that we see in perspective with the ‘tradition of abstraction’.

Minimalism, one of the evolutionary forms of geometric abstraction (Dan Van Severen, Walter Leblanc) and lyrical abstraction (Maurice Weyckaert) remain a source of inspiration.

Another path leads to conceptual art in which the work of art gives us an ‘idea’ that goes beyond the physical object that is shown to the viewer. Experiments with the surface, materials and volumes blur the traditional art categories (Ann Veronica Janssens, Marthe Méry, Michel Mouffe) and question the viewer (Edith Deckyndt, Xavier Méry).

artists:

Felix De Boeck, Ferdinand Schirren, Rik Wouters, Roger Parent, Rodolphe Strebelle, Louis Thevenet, Georges Creten, Jean Brusselmans, Jean-Louis Flouquet, Jehan Frison, Jos Albert, Willy Schlobach, Dario de Regoyos, Marcel Jefferys, Jef Verheyen, Anne Bonnet, Gaston Bertrand, Louis Van Lint, Jo Delahaut, Jean Dewasne, André Dekeijser, Marc Mendelson, Antoine Mortier, Guy Vandenbranden, Paul Horvath, Mig Quinet, Jules Lismonde, Pierre Lahaut, Dan Van Severen, Gaston Bertrand, Edith Dekyndt, Ann Veronica Janssens, Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Walter Leblanc, Michel Mouffe, Marthe Wéry, Xavier Mary, Maurice Wyckaert, Francis Dusepulchre