Visits / Exhibition / workshops 

CIVA – Air Nouveau

© CIVA Collections, Brussels. Maurice Culot

This building was originally home to a secondary coal-fired power plant, which mainly supplied the Brussels tram network. Although electrification only began in 1894, by 1903 this facility was no longer sufficient to meet demand. Converted into offices for the Brussels intermunicipal water company CIBE/BIWM in 1983, the building, now houses the International Centre for Urbanism, Architecture and Landscape (CIVA). The premises were restored, extended and repurposed through the joint efforts of architects Jean-Philippe Garric, Bernard Quirot, Valérie Nègre and Joseph Altuna. Opened in spring 2000, CIVA is an archive, study and exhibition centre that organises a raft of activities linked to the institutions based at the site: the René Pechère Library, the Archives d'Architecture Moderne (AAM), the Fonds pour l'Architecture, the Fonds Philippe Rotthier pour l'Architecture and the Paul Duvigneaud Centre (an ecological documentation centre). Visitors can consult documents, tour the exhibitions and participate in the other events hosted by CIVA throughout the year.

During Heritage Days, CIVA opens its doors to offer a different perspective on Art Nouveau. In the library, in the Kids Town, each visitor will discover archival documents (photographs, plans, magazines, architectural elements) from which they can react and exchange ideas to raise awareness around the social dimension of this architectural movement.

During a creative Air Nouveau workshop, each participant will experiment with this dimension, imagining his or her own façade and Art Nouveau motifs, inspired by stylistic forms in nature.

At the end of the day, these reinvented motifs will form a collective installation at CIVA.

On the program: archives of school buildings, the Maison du Peuple, social housing, facade competitions for street beautification, plans of private houses, old magazines...

Meeting point in the entrance hall of CIVA.

Practical information

Sun., 10:00 to 17:00

Rue de l'Ermitage/Kluisstraat 55 – Ixelles/Elsene

Accessible with assistance

Accessible with assistance