Visit us at BRAFA

24th of January 2023

This year, at the King Baudouin Foundation’s stand (stand 131) on the BRAFA Art Fair, you can discover key works of Belgian heritage that have been acquired to display in our public collections. And, as a nod to the 2023 Year of Art Nouveau in Brussels, we are also exhibiting several previously-acquired Art Nouveau pieces by Philippe Wolfers and Paul Hankar.

This year, the King Baudouin Foundation’s stand will feature an important 20th century masterpiece of Belgian heritage, namely the three volumes of Théâtre, the collected plays of Maurice Maeterlinck, illustrated with original drawings by Léon Spilliaert (1902-1903). Listed as a major Flemish work, the volumes were part of a private collection. The King Baudouin Foundation was able to acquire this work thanks to a legacy from the philanthropist Eliane Vercaempt, on behalf of the the Belgian Royal Museums of Fine Arts. Through the intervention of the King Baudouin Foundation, Théâtre is now accessible to everyone. This rescue operation succeeded thanks to the unique collaboration of the Belgian Royal Museums of Fine Arts, the King Baudouin Foundation and the Flemish Community.

Another highlight is a painting by Hans Memling. The King Baudouin Foundation United States (KBFUS) has recently facilitated the donation of this painting to the Saint John’s Hospital in Bruges. The purchase has meant that the portrait of a member of the family De Rojas has returned home from the United States, to the city where Memling painted it in the 15th century. This masterpiece, by one of the most important Flemish Primitive painters, will exceptionally be on display at this year’s BRAFA.

The King Baudouin Foundation is also exhibiting a number of drawings by the internationally renowned Belgian artist Pierre Alechinsky, created for his book Extrait pour traits. The maquette was purchased by the Marie-Jeanne Dauchy Fund. There are 88 drawings that engage in dialogue with texts by authors including Pol Bury, Hugo Claus, Christian Dotremont and Luc de Heusch.

You may recognise the Art Nouveau jewellery designed by the renowned painter George Morren. The King Baudouin Foundation purchased the pieces at last year’s BRAFA, thanks to the Christian Bauwens Fund. The silver coat hook and six ladies’ buttons are unique Art Nouveau pieces, coming from the artist’s estate.

At the start of 2023 – the Year of Art Nouveau in Brussels – the King Baudouin Foundation also presents some exceptional Art Nouveau pieces from its collection. Folding screens created by Paul Hankar, a leading figure in modern architecture, will be presented, alongside drawings from the famous Wolfers collection and a special silver table service that Philippe Wolfers designed for Victor Horta, Art Nouveau architect par excellence.

Curious to discover these Belgian top artworks and art nouveau pieces? Then visit the BRAFA art fair at Brussels Expo. The fair will take place from January 29 to February 5, with opening hours of 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. (and, on Thursday, February 2, exceptionally, until 10 p.m.). We look forward to seeing you there!

Practical information:
King Baudouin Foundation stand : nr 131
BRAFA Art Fair
January 29 to February 5 2023
Open from 11am to 7pm (Thursday February 2nd, open until 10pm)
Brussels Expo I Heysel, palaces 3 and 4