6 art venues to discover off the beaten track

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(c) Vanhaerents Art Collection, Brussels
Published at 28/04/2021
By Mylène

Brussels, the contemporary art city par excellence, is a major player when it comes to art galleries. Big national and international names are well established here! But the capital also boasts a number of slightly more secret, often unexpected venues for the most curious of visitors!

This week, follow us off the beaten track to some of the capital's most unconventional galleries. Amazing spaces, extraordinary places, innovative concepts, architectural settings that are worth the trip in their own right... here are a few hotspots to add a little spice to your art gallery experience!

The most hair-raising: LE SALON D’ART

Looking for an unusual experience? Head to Salon d'art, a hybrid venue which, as its name suggests, is both a hairdressing salon and an art gallery! This must-see Saint-Gilles venue has been introducing the general public to contemporary art since 1976, with exhibitions by, among others, Roland Topor, Pierre Alechinsky and Stefan de Jaeger. Here, art and life intermingle and you can chat about painting while getting a fresh new haircut. Jean Marchetti, hairdresser-gallerist-publisher and manager of this incredible establishment, is the guarantor of the singular spirit of this (very) open-minded location!

Where? 81 Rue de l’Hôtel des Monnaies - 1060 Saint-Gilles

When? Tuesday to Friday, from 14:00 to 18:00 – Saturdays, from 9:30 to 12:00.

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The most multidisciplinary: ELEVEN STEENS

ELEVEN STEENS

Decrepit walls revealing a few bricks, mosaic windows, concrete floors: ELEVEN STEENS is, above all, a space of raw beauty nestled in the wasteland of the former Belgacom buildings. This art centre, which has remained untouched by industrial development, defines itself as an independent and multidisciplinary platform where art, design and the performing arts can come together. A space dedicated to "art and materials", ELEVEN STEENS explores textures, from ceramics to textiles and from wood and metal to stone. It's a unique location, with a distinct "Brooklyn" vibe.

Where? 11 Rue Steens - 1060 Saint-Gilles

When? Friday to Sunday, from 14:00 to 19:00 – Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday, appointment only.

The most design: ATELIER JESPERS

Atelier Jespers (c) Jerroen Verrecht

Somewhere between an artist's studio, an architect's house and a gallery, Atelier Jespers lies at the crossroads of these worlds. Formerly the home of sculptor Oscar Jespers, to whom the gallery owes its name, its minimalist lines are the work of architect Victor Bourgeois.

Behind its large modernist windows, this unique place hosts the best of contemporary art and design, just a stone's throw from Georges Henri Park. In recent years, we have come across the immaculate sculptures of Alexandra Leyre Mein and the contemporary ceramics of Dutchman Anton Reijnders. A must for all lovers of architecture and beautiful objects.

Where? 149 Avenue du Prince Héritier - 1200 Woluwe-Saint-Lambert

When? Appointment only

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The most experimental: LA MAISON DE RENDEZ-VOUS

Autumn Ramsey - La Maison de Rendez-vous.jpg - (c) Autumn Ramsey - La Maison de Rendez-vous

La Maison de Rendez-vous is like a genuine international flat-share! This comfortable building in Saint-Gilles brings together several continents within its panelled walls. From Tokyo to Mexico City via Pristina and Los Angeles, four international galleries (LambdaLambdaLambda, Lulu, MISAKO&ROSEN, Park View/Paul Soto) have come together here since 2019. In contrast to traditional galleries, this newcomer offers an innovative and experimental approach and blends horizons in a spirit of sharing. It is a dynamic venue that loves to support emerging artists in particular!

Where? 23 Avenue Jef Lambeaux - 1060 Saint-Gilles

When? Thursday to Saturday, from 14:00 to 19:00

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The most immersive: VANHAERENTS ART COLLECTION

Vanhaerents Art Collection, Brussels

Just a stone's throw from the Halles Saint-Géry, the Vanhaerents Art Collection is a veritable cathedral of raw concrete spanning three floors. Housed in a former warehouse, it is a pioneer in that it is the first private collection of contemporary art accessible to the public in Belgium. The Vanhaerents family champions the "slow art" approach and brings new pieces from their collection to light every five years. By presenting them as if they were stored in a warehouse, the current scenography invites exploration. From floor to ceiling, wooden boxes and crates reveal the works with great originality and arouse our curiosity. An experience that is anything but classic and more like an artsy game of hide-and-seek!

Where? 29 Rue Anneessens - 1000 Brussels

When? Appointment only

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The most pop : DEODATO ART

Deodato Art Room Brussels - (c) Deodato Art Room Brussels

Here's a bit of news that will have art lovers buzzing! Within its brick walls, Deodato Art – the freshly installed art gallery on rue Saint Jean - promises an explosion of colour and navigates, with style, between Pop and Street Art. Here you'll come across the chrome sculptures of Jeff Koons, the characteristic lines of Keith Haring or works by the king of Pop Art himself, Andy Warhol. Audacious, sometimes provocative, often ironic but always very urban culture-oriented, Deodato's works will shatter your assumptions about contemporary art! For its first exhibition, it tackles the master of street art, Banksy, presenting a monographic exhibition made up of some rare pieces. Not to be missed!

Where? 28 Rue Saint Jean – 1000 Brussels

When? Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:30 to 19:00

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