Belgium’s major galleries and museums are clearly marked on the tourist trail, but there is also a wealth of public art to be found outdoors beyond the walls of the traditional institutions. Not only is it free, you’ll also avoid the tourist queues. You just need to know where to look. The Public Art In Belgium Flickr group is one tool that can help.
For the past few years I’ve been using Flickr to collate photographs of public art all over Belgium. The group is approaching its 3rd anniversary and well over 100 people have contributed 1600 pictures already.
With so many great pictures to browse through, it’s a great source of inspiration for your next day out in Belgium and a chance to see a town through the eyes of fellow visitors rather than just the usual tourist leaflets.
Here are a few examples of the kind of surprises you’ll find in the group. (Links are given to images to respect the photographers’ copyright)
Liège – Le Plongeur (Idel Ianchelevici)
“Taureau”, by Francis André. Campus of the University of Liège, Belgium.
An afternoon on the beach in De Panne. You may also have seen these elephants in Terveuren:
Photographic prowess isn’t a must for contributing to the group. It is just as interesting to document a town’s hidden gems or temporary art event and there are plenty of those in Belgium.
For example, this unexpected shot shows some of the logistics of art such as Antony Gormley figures laid on the beach at De Panne waiting to be loaded onto a truck.
Or these before and after shots of a new sculpture in Mechelen wrapped up and in storage.
Then a couple of days after once it had been placed.
The aim is to have more than 2000 photos in the group pool by the 3rd anniversary in May, so if you’re out and about in Belgium this month ( especially at Beaufort04 ), snap those sculptures or temporary installations and add them to the group. Most important of all, have fun discovering new places and appreciating all the free art.