Brussels
Art Guide

Contemporary art exhibitions, news and editorial from Brussels.

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At the heart of Europe, Brussels is a bustling, ever-changing city with a unique and highly active fine art scene. Over the centuries the Belgian capital has drawn European masters from Pieter Bruegel to Auguste Rodin, René Magritte, and Paul Delvaux. Heritage and UNESCO sites ranging from the medieval Grand-Place to 17th-century guild halls, a 19th-century stock exchange, iconic Art Nouveau and Art Deco town houses, and the futuristic Atomium building, amidst multiple green spaces define the urban landscape of this cosmopolitan cultural centre.

For a city at the heart of European politics and bureaucracy, Brussels' contemporary art scene is highly anarchistic and anti-authoritarian, defying categorisation and standardisation. Highly decentralised and diverse, there is no principal art district; instead, networks and groupings of various migrant and local contemporary artists and their collectors are scattered across the city's districts in all manner of spaces. Empty and abandoned spaces across the city have been transformed into places of art, with even major institutions such as Kanal—Centre Pompidou occupying former industrial spaces.

The city's contemporary art museums and institutions—the Musée Modern (Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium), the Kanal, Wiels Contemporary Art Centre and Centrale for Contemporary Art—give just a small sample of the Brussels art world. An abundance of independent and alternative exhibition spaces and contemporary art galleries help Belgian and migrant artists find their own path. Galleries in Brussels like Templon, Xavier Hufkens, Galerie Greta Meert, Almine Rech, Office Baroque, and Rodolphe Janssen, as well as non-profits such as La Loge and Complot, and independent institutions such as the Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art and the Boghossian Foundation (based in Villa Empain) act as the backbone to the city's contemporary art scene.

With one of the highest concentrations of collectors in Europe and a large number of galleries and independent art organisations that offer support and stability to newer artists, Brussels attracts a wealth of international artists, evident across the multi-cultural collaborations and exhibition spaces dotted across the city.

Major exhibitions are sometimes held at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, though rarely do all art circles converge in this manner. The principal exception is the Art Brussels contemporary art fair (established in 1968), when artists, galleries, and art lovers from all over Brussels and overseas converge in one place. Other smaller alternative art fairs have arisen in recent years, including Art Truc Troc, the Affordable Art Fair, Independent, and Poppositions. These independent efforts attempt to alter gallery hierarchies and provide further space for emerging talent.

Image: Grand Place 1-7 during civil twilight, Brussels. Photo: Trougnouf (Benoit Brummer) (CC BY-SA 4.0).

Featured Current Exhibitions In Brussels

Current Exhibition | Brussels
5 March–24 April 2021
Francis Dusepulchre

Le Langage Des Ombres (retrospective)

La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie Bach View Exhibition
Francis Dusépulchre, Tensions Sereines (1990). Acrylic body lacquer on masonite. 59 x 51.7 x 5 cm. Courtesy La Patinoire – Galerie Valerie Bach.
Le Langage Des Ombres (retrospective)
Current Exhibition | Brussels
5 March–24 April 2021
Lucy + Jorge Orta

Masking

La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie Bach View Exhibition
 Lucy Orta, Masking (2020). Murano hand-blown glass. Approximately 45 x 35 x 8 cm. Courtesy La Patinoire Royale Galerie Valerie Bach.
Masking
Current Exhibition | Brussels
26 February–17 April 2021

Camiel Van Breedam, from 1985 to 2020

Galerie Laurentin, Paris - Bruxelles View Exhibition
Camiel Van Breedam, from 1985 to 2020
Current Exhibition | Brussels
29 October 2020–20 March 2021
Richard Tuttle

Stories I - XX

Galerie Greta Meert View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Richard Tuttle, Stories I - XX, Galerie Greta Meert, Brussels (29 October 2020–16 January 2021). Courtesy Galerie Greta Meert. 
Stories I - XX
Current Exhibition | Brussels
29 October 2020–20 March 2021
Edith Dekyndt

The Ghost Year

Galerie Greta Meert View Exhibition
Exhibition view: Edith Dekyndt, The Ghost Year, Galerie Greta Meert, Brussels (29 October 2020–27 February 2021). Courtesy Galerie Greta Meert. 
The Ghost Year
Upcoming Exhibition | Brussels
6 March–3 April 2021
Matt Connors

Swap

Xavier Hufkens View Exhibition
Matt Connors. Location in English (2020). Acrylic, oil, crayon and coloured pencil on canvas. 58.4 x 50.8 x 3.8 cm. Courtesy Xavier Hufkens, 44 rue Van Eyck, Brussels. 
Swap

Brussels In Ocula Magazine

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Current Exhibitions In Brussels

View All Exhibitions (257)
Contemporary art exhibition, Francis Dusepulchre, Le Langage Des Ombres (retrospective) at La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie Bach, Brussels
5 March–24 April 2021 Francis Dusepulchre Le Langage Des Ombres (retrospective) La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie BachBrussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Lucy + Jorge Orta, Masking at La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie Bach, Brussels
5 March–24 April 2021 Lucy + Jorge Orta Masking La Patinoire Royale – galerie Valérie BachBrussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Camiel Van Breedam, from 1985 to 2020 at Galerie Laurentin, Paris - Bruxelles, Brussels
26 February–17 April 2021 Camiel Van Breedam, from 1985 to 2020 Galerie Laurentin, Paris - BruxellesBrussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Richard Tuttle, Stories I - XX at Galerie Greta Meert, Brussels
29 October 2020–20 March 2021 Richard Tuttle Stories I - XX Galerie Greta MeertBrussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Edith Dekyndt, The Ghost Year at Galerie Greta Meert, Brussels
29 October 2020–20 March 2021 Edith Dekyndt The Ghost Year Galerie Greta MeertBrussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Matt Connors, Swap at Xavier Hufkens, 44 rue Van Eyck, Brussels
6 March–3 April 2021 Matt Connors Swap Xavier Hufkens44 rue Van Eyck, Brussels

Ocula Member Galleries In Brussels

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Almine Rech contemporary art gallery in Brussels, Belgium Almine Rech Paris, Brussels, London, New York, Shanghai
Mendes Wood DM contemporary art gallery in Brussels, Belgium Mendes Wood DM São Paulo, Brussels, New York
rodolphe janssen contemporary art gallery in Brussels, Belgium rodolphe janssen Brussels, Knokke
Templon contemporary art gallery in Brussels, Belgium Templon Paris, Brussels
Xavier Hufkens contemporary art gallery in 6 rue St-Georges, Brussels, Belgium Xavier Hufkens Brussels
Xavier Hufkens contemporary art gallery in 107 rue St-Georges, Brussels, Belgium Xavier Hufkens Brussels
Xavier Hufkens contemporary art gallery in 44 rue Van Eyck, Brussels, Belgium Xavier Hufkens Brussels

Contemporary Institutions In Brussels

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Wiels contemporary art institution in Brussels, Belgium Wiels Brussels

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