The Cauchie House
This artist's house, designed entirely by Paul and Lina Cauchie, admirably reflects the tastes and interests of a couple fully committed to the geometric Art Nouveau aesthetic. As both painters and decorators, they took particular care in designing this unique façade, whose first floor features a cartouche held up by an elegantly dressed woman and reading Par nous, pour nous ("By us, for us"). Known for his frescoes and sgraffiti, Paul Cauchie's interest in architecture seemingly began with this 1904 project. Some believe he may have been helped by his friend, the architect Henri van Wassenhove, but there is no proof of this. Be that as it may, the façade stands out as much for its rich ornamentation as for its mouldings. Flanked by what look like two monumental pillars terminating in an acroterion at the level of the flat roof, the central section polarises the decorative scheme, which culminates in an impressive sgraffito composition depicting nine female figures. On the ground floor, six slender wooden pillars stand in front of the side-accessed main entrance. The ironwork on the balconies as well as some of the geometric shapes chosen by Cauchie and the way he arranged recurring motifs such as stylised roses are reminiscent of the Glasgow School or the Vienna Secession. Inside, original sgraffiti have been preserved, including those in the dining room, which feature allegorical female figures representing the Arts, Theatre, Astronomy, Love, Music and the five senses. (Listed 26/05/1975)
Guided tour with guide and anthropologist Alice Graas focusing on the work of Lina Cauchie and the place of women artists in the Art Nouveau period (in French on Sat. at 10:00 and 11:45).
In cooperation with L'architecture qui dégenre.
Guided tours with Emmanuelle Job, and Shanna Caboz Cabeleira, heads of the Monument Decor Unit and the Mural Painting Workshop at IRPA, in French on Sunday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., in Dutch on Sunday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
In cooperation with KIK-IRPA.
Guided tours in French Belgian Sign Language: Saturday at 14:00 and Sunday at 9:30. In cooperation with Arts & Culture (more info and booking : https://heritagedays.urban.brussels/en/practicalities/).
Rue des Francs/Frankenstraat 5 – Etterbeek
Guided tours and by reservation only