2024 puts Leie region in the cultural spotlight with tributes to celebrated painters

2024 will see Belgium's Leie region at the centre of cultural celebration with the initiative The Flemish Masters on the Leie. The region will honour its reputation for art by featuring some of its most prolific painters through unique exhibitions.

"A trip to the Leie region should certainly not be missing from your bucket list for 2024," says Claude Croes, chairman of the Toerisme Leiestreek non-profit organisation.

The City of Waregem and Mudel (Museum of Deinze and the Leie Region) will organise several events spotlighting the Belgian painter Emile Claus on the centennial of his death. Claus grew up in the region, and his surroundings profoundly influenced his art. With Emile Claus: Master of Light, his artwork will be presented through an exhibition of over 100 works and a large-scale digital experience.

The Roger Raveel Museum in Machelen-aan-de-Leie (Zulte) will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2024 and pay homage to its namesake with several exhibitions, including a retrospective of the artist's life. A special tribute will be paid to the artist's wife, Zulma De Nijs, who dedicated her life to posing for and managing his works. "Muse and Manager is the ultimate tribute to this exceptional woman who was not only the muse for Roger Raveel, but also his manager 'avant la lettre'," curator Carlos Eene says. "Her name will, therefore, remain forever linked to Raveel's work. It is only appropriate to honour her in the anniversary year of the Roger Raveel Museum: without Zulma, there would be no Raveel; without Zulma, there would be no museum."

Roger Raveel's Zulma ©Yigruzeltil
Roger Raveel's Zulma ©Yigruzeltil


Flemish artist Martin Wallaert will open his studio to the public in May of 2024 in collaboration with the municipality of Zulte in the Anekd'Arte project. His work will introduce visitors to Machelen-aan-de-Leie as an art village through audio, video and a road map to explore the inspiring landscapes.

Martin Wallaert with work Guardian Angel © rv
Martin Wallaert with work Guardian Angel © rv

Toerisme Oost-Vlaanderen and Toerisme Leiestreek hope to introduce people to these past and present great artists through this initiative. "Our Flemish masters are one of our best-known Flemish ambassadors," said Zuhal Demir (NV-A), the Flemish Minister of Tourism. "Everyone knows Rubens and Van Eyck, and their works hang in all the top museums around the world. Our modern Flemish masters, such as Emile Claus, can also provide a lot of interest. With The Flemish Masters on the Leie, all national and international visitors will be able to see and experience our modern masters."

#FlandersNewsService | Emile Claus - Picking Blossoms ©AGE FOTOSTOCK


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