Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten Anderlecht (fully booked)
Although its façade claims the building was constructed in 1563, the ‘Flemish House’ was actually erected in 1890 on the site of an older structure. It was commissioned by Jules Vandenpeereboom (1843-1917), a lawyer, politician and long-time Minister for Railways, Postal Services and the Telegraph System who was later appointed an honorary Minister of State, and designed by François Malfait (1872-1955), who was just starting out as an architect at the time. This means that the building we see today is not the original construction, but a pastiche in the truest eclectic tradition, blending neo-Gothic and neo-Renaissance elements while retaining the character of a 16th-century dwelling, just as Vandenpeereboom wanted.
Vandenpeereboom intended his house to be a museum of sorts – a showcase for his collections of furniture, antiques and old books – and its interior decor was designed and executed with this in mind. Special care was taken over the house’s ornamental features, which include a wealth of older items recovered from historic residences, such as monumental stone fireplaces, carved panelling and stained glass. When Vandenpeereboom died in 1917, it passed to the Belgian State. Since 1979, it has been home to the Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten art school, which expanded to occupy the industrial buildings of the former print shop next door. Several of the school’s studios will be open for visits, including those used for restoring paintings, creating stained glass, working with textiles, drawing, restoring colours and sculpting with stone. A community vegetable garden was recently created at the rear of the building. (Listed since 28 February 2002)
Sat. & Sun., 10:00 to 18:00
Place de la Vaillance/Dapperheidsplein, Anderlecht
Advance booking required