Exhibition: Comès. D’Ombre et de Silence

14th of July 2020

In September 2020, an exhibition of Didier Comès’s work will open at the BELvue Museum in Brussels. The event organiser, the King Baudouin Foundation, will pay homage to one of the greatest names in strip comics.

Didier Comès is one of the leading creators of Belgian strip comics, a master of black and white and the fantastical. His stories, peopled with those in the margins of society (little people, the mentally ill, the disabled…), make such characters emerge from the shadows, conveying upon them dignity and normality, an aspect that will be highlighted in the exhibition.

Curated by Thierry Bellefroid and Eric Dubois, the exhibition is an initiative of the King Baudouin Foundation and is designed to promote the artistic heritage of Comès within the framework of the donation made of his work by his brother and sisters, who wanted to preserve their brother’s work in the absence of any instructions set out in a testament.

Didier Comès enjoyed huge success at the beginning of the 1980s with Silence, a graphic novel that left its mark on a whole generation of readers. This simple story, of a deaf and dumb character exploited by the landowners of Beausonge and a witch who ignites his conscience, is inseparable from the character of Comès himself, who suffered all types of rejection, exclusions and violence, both rural and urban.

Master of silence, Comès left us in 2013, without ever having been awarded the honour of a major exhibition in Brussels. The King Baudouin Foundation has decided to remedy this. Following this important donation and with the publication in September 2020 of the monograph “Comès. d’Ombre et de Silence” (Comès. Of Shadow and Silence) by Casterman, you will have the opportunity to (re-) discover the artist’s work at the BELvue Museum through his mute artwork, from 25 September, 2020.

The original artworks for Corto Maltese, the most famous comic strip of Hugo Pratt, a close friend of Comès and fervent defender of the comic strip without words, will also be on show, as will those of Christophe Chabouté, the author who has often been referred to as the spiritual son of Didier Comès.

The exhibition is a partnership project with the Maison Autrique in Brussels, where there is a second, parallel exhibition devoted to Didier Comès. Comès à huis clos (Comès behind closed doors) that takes the visitor into the comic book atmosphere of the album Eva and pays homage to the fantastical and psychological universe of Comès.

Practical information

Exhibition: “Comès. D’ombre et de Silence”
BELvue Museum, Place des Palais 7, 1000 Brussels
Opening hours: Monday to Friday: 9h30 to 17h. Saturday, Sunday and school holidays: 10h to 18h
Dates: from 25/09/2020 to 3/01/2021

Exhibition: “Comès à huis clos”
Maison Autrique, Chaussée de Haecht 266, 1030 Schaerbeek (Brussels)
Opening hours: Wednesday to Sunday: 12h to 18h. Closed on public holidays.
Dates: from 24 September 2020 to 02 May 2021