New selection of works at the Fin-de-Siècle Museum

Published on 09.12.2019

The dynamic collection of the Fin-de-Siècle Museum offers, on a regular basis, a rotation of artworks. Around a hundred works on paper, photographs, objects and documents are rotated every six months, for curatorial reasons, thanks to the help of partners.

About a hundred fragile works or temporary loans are currently on display exclusively until June 2020. The selection of works focuses on the contrast between female artists, femmes fatales and women as objects. The starting point of this selection are the sketches and studies of Alix d'Anethan (1848 - 1921), purchased by the museum in 1924 as part of the "wish to see our collection of modern drawings grow." Alix d'Anethan, just like many other female artists, is practically unknown today. Although she was part of the group of women who quietly emancipated in an artistic world dominated by men. A world in which it was often forbidden for them to follow an official education. They are therefore rare, the women who succeeded and were able to claim their place, without the support of their father or their husband who is also an artist. We are more familiar with the muses of the male artists than with these women who have created themselves. Other iconic images from this fin de siècle period are the male obsession with the figure of the femme fatale, the mysterious woman or the woman as an object. And are these two images and the tension between them not still relevant?

Other works by women artists - such as Anna Boch, Cécile Douard or Paule Deman - are featured in the selection.

 

About the rotation of artworks
The Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium possesses a rich collection of works on paper, which mainly consists of drawings, pastels and watercolors from the years 1868-1914. Our structural partner institutions, the print room and the music department of the KBR, the collection of 20th-century art from the RMAH and the archives of la Monnaie, also have a rich and specific collection that is complementary to ours. All these collections demonstrate the importance of the techniques on paper during this period. Because of their sensitivity to light, these works cannot be permanently shown to the public. That is why these works are shown in specific parts of the exhibition route, each time on a specific theme, and the set-up is replaced every six months, in accordance with the strict protection guidelines.