Backstage: The Collection

Rubens, Van Eyck, Fouquet, Ensor, Magritte and other great names besides. That’s the KMSKA collection. Their art is travelling the world right now or waiting patiently in storage. Because, as you know, we’re renovating our museum. In the meantime, our curators have been working hard on the new presentation of the collection. A collection of world stature. Come and take a peek backstage!

The historical museum

Two worlds and time-clusters in one building: that’s our basic principle. The ‘Historical Route’ will show masterpieces from before 1880, from the Flemish Primitives to the Baroque. Including global stars like Jean Fouquet’s Madonna and The Adoration of the Magi by Peter Paul Rubens.

The Adoration of the Magi is quintessential Rubens. It’s an opera in paint.

Nico Van Hout, Curator 17th Century

Eighteen themes

Eighteen grandiose galleries will present 18 equally grandiose themes like ‘War and Peace’, ‘Saints’, ‘Salvation’, ‘Heaven on Earth’ and ‘Power’, to name just a few. Art in a narrative context. Can you picture it already?

The new museum

The ‘Modern Route’ shows the Expressionists and other masters from 1880 onwards. The collection reflects the art-historical movements of the 19th and 20th centuries throughout Western Europe. From Romanticism and Realism to Symbolism and Expressionism. With as its pivot point, James Ensor, Belgium’s most important Symbolist. These two worlds will exist independently of each other, but the themed approach will be the same in both cases.

Light, colour, form

The collection of art post-1880 is all about visual means. We present it through the prism of three fundamental themes: light, colour and form. Why these three? Because artists in the relevant periods were profoundly engaged with them. The new museum will have a heart full of surprises.

More backstage

Like a backstage peek into the restoration studio? Watch the other KMSKA Backstage episode!

A Mals Media production. With thanks to KAAN Architecten, the Support Services Agency, the Cultural Infrastructure Fund, Artes Roegiers and the Flemish Government.