Delicious faience exhibited in Freÿr

21st of March 2013

The Braun-van den Corput Collection, a reference in Brussels and European glazed earthenware is on show at the Château de Freÿr from April 1. An acquisition by the Léon Courtin-Marcelle Bouché Fund, managed by the King Baudouin Foundation.

Comprising some fifty pieces, this is a very coherent collection, of mainly terrines – mostly in trompe-l’œil – created in various European centres during the 18th century, but particularly in Brussels. Several 19th century decorative statuettes complete the collection.

The collection presents a unique testimony to the development of the art of the table during the 18th century. Greater gastronomic refinement and extravagant dinners necessitated the appropriate tableware for each of the numerous courses that were served. Guests served themselves from a variety of dishes presented in terrines of naturalist forms. These recipients reflected the passions of princes and the aristocracy in the 18th century for hunting and other country pursuits. From the mid-18th century the makers of porcelain and glazed earthenware rivalled each other in imagining hunting trophies and vegetables in trompe-l’œil. One of the masterpieces of the collection in the form of a turkey attests, among others, to the artisans’ skills.

These pieces of tableware in trompe-l’œil testifies to an art of the table that was becoming more popular, but also more affordable. They enabled dishes to be presented on the table and make it more amusing. At this time, manufacturers competed with each other in their creativity, letting their imagination take forms such as ducks, cabbages, asparagus and melons, all of which enchanted the guests.

This collection, built up with patience over the 19th century, was handed down from generation to generation. Thanks to the Léon Courtin-Marcelle Bouché Fund, managed by the King Baudouin Foundation, the unity of this prestigious collection has now been safeguarded in perpetuity. The fund has chosen to exhibit the collection at the Château de Freÿr which, thanks to its history, provides the ideal setting for it. The Freÿr estate can count on another heritage fund created within the King Baudouin Foundation, notably the Laubespin-Lagarde Fund, to encourage further initiatives that will guarantee its perpetuity. This fund has been responsible for renovating the room in which the collection is exhibited. Two philanthropic funds have thus come together to safeguard this unique collection, built up by people who were passionate about our heritage, and to make it accessible to the public.

A booklet accompanies the exhibition.

Freÿr 12
B-5540 Hastière, Belgium

Opening Hours :
April 1st to November 15th: Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays: from 11am to 5pm
1 July to 31 August: Tuesday to Friday: from 11am to 5pm