Artists' Studios and Museums Tour, Brussels

Brussels is the cultural capital of Belgium and also the former home of such well-known artists as Victor Horta, Camille Lemonnier and Paul Cauchie. There are a number of famous artists' houses and museums in Brussels, which exhibit numerous Belgian masterpieces. Don't miss the chance to visit some of the most famous artists' studios and house museums in Brussels.
You can follow this self-guided walking tour to explore the attractions listed below. How it works: download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Artists' Studios and Museums Tour Map

Guide Name: Artists' Studios and Museums Tour
Guide Location: Belgium » Brussels (See other walking tours in Brussels)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 5
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.3 km
Author: audrey
1
Constantin Meunier Museum

1) Constantin Meunier Museum

This museum is dedicated to the life and works of Constantin Meunier, a Belgian painter and sculptor who worked and lived in Brussels. In addition to producing art, he was also taught at the Louvian Academy of Fine Arts. He was also a co-founder of the Société Libre des Beaux-Arts (Free Society of Fine Arts) of Brussels. This organization was formed to promote artistic freedom and to advance Realist paintings. The museum, the site of his home and studio, was acquired by government is 1936 and was opened to the public shortly after that. The museum features over 150 works and documents pertaining to Meunier, with a specific focus on the last 30 years of his life. This portion of his life is often described as the second phase of his artistic career, where he focused on the social and industrial situation in Belgium. He desired to bring attention to the growing social problems in Belgium in the early 1900s, including the plight of the common worker. The museum is part of the Belgian Royal Museum of Fine Arts.

Operation hours: Tuesday - Friday 10:00-12:00; 13:00-17:00, excluding holidays. Weekend appointments may be arranged for groups.
Sight description based on wikipedia
2
Horta Museum

2) Horta Museum (must see)

The Horta Museum focuses on the works and life of the Belgian architect Victor Horta, who is often described as the father of Art Nouveau architecture and design. This style originated in the early 1900s and remained popular in the 1950s. Horta mentored several designer and architects who also went on to produce fine work in the Art Nouveau style. The building which houses the museum, the former Horta house and atelier, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. This list recognizes places that are of special physical or cultural significance. The museum is made up of two buildings: the home and the studio. The interior of the museum boasts Art Nouveau finishes and there is a permanent display of art objects, utensils and furniture designed by Horta and his colleagues. The museum also includes documents and ephemera associated with Horta’s life. The basement displays miniature models of numerous buildings that Horta designed during his career. These provide an opportunity for the visitor to compare and contrast different buildings under his design. In addition to the permanent collection, the museum hosts temporary exhibits related to Horta and his art. There is also a gift shop on site.

Why You Should Visit:
The house is just a stunning display of Art Nouveau and pretty much every little crevice is a work of art.
A decadent confection of artwork, beautifully restored and a premium example of this style carried through all the details.

Tip:
Photography is not allowed, so be prepared to stash your camera & phone in the lobby lockers.
Take a stroll through the whole of Saint-Gilles – it's an Art Nouveau gold mine!

Opening Hours:
Tue-Sun: 2-5:30pm, except public holidays
Sight description based on wikipedia
3
Camille Lemonnier Museum

3) Camille Lemonnier Museum

The Camille Lemonnier Museum is dedicated to the Brussels-born naturalist, poet, art critic, and journalist. He was a leading figure of the Belgian artistic and literary world during his time. Often referred to as the “Marshall of Letters” and “the Belgian Zola”, he produced extensive amounts of work during his lifetime and his best known novel is Un Mâle. He was also an avid art collector. Lemonnier led a colorful life and that energy was infused in his works, sometimes resulting in controversy. He was prosecuted in Paris in 1888 for his story Gil Blas, which was found to offend against public morals. The museum, which was a product of friends of the artist, displays a number of written and painted works. Visitors can see paintings by Claus, Heymans, Baron and Wystman, as well as sculptures by Rodin, Vanderstappen and Lambeaux. The library portion of the museums contains bound works of Boisdenghein and La Buyere. Visitors also get a glimpse into Lemonnier’s private world via a recreation of the interior of his former workshop. The museum is open Monday and Thursdays and admission is free. It typically closes during the summer months of July and August.

Editor's note: The museum is temporarily closed.
4
Antoine Wiertz Museum

4) Antoine Wiertz Museum

The Antoine Wierzt Museum, part of the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, is dedicated to the works of the Belgium sculptor and painter, Antoine Joseph Wiertz. The artist studied in Antwerp and then in Italy after he won the Prix de Rome in 1832. That award allowed him to spend three years in residence in Rome. Wierzt is credited with developing a new style in oil painting. He did not like the shiny effect that oil painting left, so he developed a style called mat painting, which uses mixed colors, turpentine and other additives. His 1853 piece, “The Homeric Struggle” was the first large-scale piece to use this technique. Unfortunately, this technique resulted in a slow decay of his work, due to the additives to the paint. He moved to Brussels in the later years of his life, partially motivated by the death of his mother. When he came to Brussels, the local government gave him a workshop and studio space, which is the museum that you see today. Since Wiertz often created large-scale pieces of art, the workshop was also large in size. Wiertz’s artistic works actually garner mixed reviews and the museum typically has low attendance.

Operation hours: Tuesday – Friday: 10 am - 12 pm and 1 pm - 5 pm.
Sight description based on wikipedia
5
Cauchie House

5) Cauchie House

The Cauchie house dates back to 1905 and provides another fine example of Art Nouveau architecture in Brussels. The house is names after its builder, Paul Cauchie, a Belgian artist, painter and decorative artist. It is widely known for its unique allegorical sgraffiti on the building facade. Sgraffito, which is a derivative of the Italian word sgraffiare (to scratch), is a wall decor technique that is produced by layering tinted plaster in contrasting colors and then removing portions of the top layer to review the layer below. The design on the main facade of the building was actually designed by the artist to promote his own work in sgraffiti and his wife’s work as an art teacher. The inscription on the building “Par Nous – Pour Nous” (By Us – For Us), further shows the role of the house as a promotional piece. The house appears narrow compared to those next to it and is only 6 meters (20 feet) wide. In 1979, there was interest in using the house as a museum dedicated to Tintin, a popular comic book character created by Belgian artist Georges Rémi. Unfortunately, this idea did not get enough traction. Today the house has been divided into different uses. The upper two floors have been converted to apartments. The basement and cellars, which once contained Caucherie’s workshop, have been converted into a gallery and exhibits space. The first floor, which had been subject to renovations, has been restored back to the original appearance from Caucherie’s time.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Brussels, Belgium

Create Your Own Walk in Brussels

Create Your Own Walk in Brussels

Creating your own self-guided walk in Brussels is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
City Center Churches

City Center Churches

Brussels is the cultural capital of Belgium, it is also the spiritual home of Belgium's most significant churches. The city has a number of unique religious sites such as the Saint Nicholas Church, the Church of Notre-Dame de la Chapelle and the Sablon Church. Take this tour to visit some of the most impressive churches and cathedrals in Brussels' city center.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 km
Royal Sightseeing Walking Tour

Royal Sightseeing Walking Tour

The main Royal site in Brussels is the statue of Godfrey of Bouillon, which actually represents the center of the Royal Square. Also known as the Royal Place, the Royal Square is surrounded by the Royal Palace, the Royal Museums and the Royal Library. All these served as the official residence to the King of Belgium. Enjoy this two hour tour to visit the Royal places in Brussels.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
A Walking Tour in Heysel Park

A Walking Tour in Heysel Park

Situated in north Brussels, Heysel Park was home to the 1935 Brussels International Exposition. Today, Heysel Park is a great place to take your family and kids, it is home to such entertainment venues as the Planetarium, Carousel and Oceade water park. Heysel Park also includes a number of significant tourist spots, such as the Atomium, the Palace of Exhibitions, Bruparck, and other Art Deco buildings. Take this three-hour tour to see the most popular attractions in Heysel Park.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.6 km
Grand Place Walking Tour

Grand Place Walking Tour

Brussels is the capital of Belgium and also a top tourist destination in Europe. The city's main square is the Grand Place. The square is famous for its Baroque style buildings, such as the Town Hall, the King's House and other guildhalls, all of which make the Grand Place a busy tourist hotspot. Take this one-hour tour to visit the most popular tourist attractions situated in and around the Grand Place.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.3 km
Leopold Quarter Walking Tour

Leopold Quarter Walking Tour

Built in 1837, the Leopold Quarter is a popular district in Brussels and features some of city's most significant buildings, like the Paul-Henri Spaak building, the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences and Antoine Wiertz Museum. The district is also home to the popular Leopold Park and Jean Rey Square. Check out this next three-hour tour and enjoy the best sites of the Leopold Quarter in Brussels.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.3 km
City Center Museums

City Center Museums

Known as the cultural capital of Belgium, Brussels has a large number of museums located in the heart of the city. Brussels is famous for such museums as the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, the Magritte Museum, the Museum of Brussels, the Museum of Musical Instruments, etc. This tour includes the most popular museums in Brussels City Center, all within a pleasant walking distance.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 km

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