Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Art Deco in Brussels

I love Brussels, European city par excellence for its mish mash in styles, but most of all I love the remnants of its golden art deco period when it was often called "little Paris".The 1920's where a thriving artistic period when many rich patrons built themselves houses in the new style. One such couple were the Dutch art patrons, David and Alice van Buuren, who had their house built in 1928 in the new art deco Amsterdam School style. This style uses apparent brick work in fancy patterns and can be seen in many buildings in Amsterdam(I will do a later post on this!). The interior of the Van Buuren house is gorged with custom built furniture from the famous Studio Dominique in Paris. The couple also composed an extensive art collection, with van Gogh, Rik Wouters, Kees van Dongen to name but a few!
The house is now a museum, open for private visits. When I married in 2002, We organised a private visit after our civil wedding with our wedding party. One lovely incident will always stand out vividly in my memories of that day.One of our party, the husband of my dearest friend and blogger Deborah, is a wonderful pianist in his spare time, and lately now composer of p├óntomimes and film music! In one of the reception rooms, there stood a piano which had belonged to Erik Satie (composer of the gymnopedies, that wonderful piece of art deco music!). Well to give us a truly romantic wedding present, Rob sat down at the piano and played us "Summer Time" from the Gershwin "Porgyand Bess"  musical.What a way to enjoy the day and that beautiful house! When in Brussels do go and see it!

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