Centre Pompidou opens doors in Brussels
It is located at the old Citroen garage 'cathedral of glass'
Maria Koleva, Brussels
11 May, 2018
The famous face of Brussels Beaubourg.
Long-awaited news for the vast new cultural space in Brussels is already a fact. Forty one years after its launch in Paris, last weekend Centre Pompidou opened its doors in the former Citroen garage in the Belgian capital. Just on Saturday and Sunday, this “cathedral of glass, steel and concrete” welcomed 21,716 art lovers.
Located at the node of Place de l'Yser and Quai de Willebroeck in Molenbeek, the Centre Pompidou is close to the Canal and the historic centre of Brussels. Built in 1934 by the French architect Maurice-Jacques Ravaze, in collaboration with the Belgian architects Alexis Dumont and Marcel Van Goethem, this famous building represents the typical functionalist aesthetic style of the 30s of the last century.
Until the end of June 2019, Centre Pompidou will offer to the public a programme that preliminary showcases several art and architecture exhibitions, large installations and brand new creations by Brussels-based artists in the “garage”, in raw state, 'as it is'. This 13-months prefigurative phase will precede the start of the work on the 'Cultural City' that will comprise among others the Museum of Contemporary Art which is under development right now. The vast collections of the CIVA Foundation related to architecture and urban planning will also have its space.
At the same time, the Brussels-Capital Region was proud to announce that its vibrant project, named 'Kanal', will provide Brussels with multidisciplinary cultural hub covering the whole site of 35,000 sq m. On its agenda are set a lot of performance live shows, which will be presented in partnership with such exquisite cultural centres as Kunstenfestivaldesarts, BOZAR, Flagey, The Bothanique, among many others.
The Home Movie Factory, on the programme right now, is located at the Service Electro of the “garage”. It is curated by French filmmaker Michel Gondry. He invites the visitors to create a film from A to Z in a film studio. No training is necessary.
The exhibition 'Sheet steel' showcases modern metal sculptures under a project by Nicolas Liucci-Goutnikov, from Musee national d'art moderne, Centre Pompidou. The masterpieces will be regularly renewed until June 2019.
Till 12 November this year, La Ribot installation 'Walk the Chair' will be sheltered at the former Carwash premises. This oeuvre consists of 50 fold-up chairs on which La Ribot has inscribed quotes using pyrography technique. Inviting the visitors to develop their own performance in the space of the museum, the chairs from the installation are available to be freely and spontaneously used.
It is a piece of Europe that is taking shape and two countries are uniting through the union of two cultural institutions - the Kanal Foundation and the Pompidou Centre, Francoise Nyssen, French Culture Minister, pointed out during the opening ceremony. She also named this project “a European adventure marked by solidarity, freedom and creativity”.
Rudi Vervoort, Minister-President of the Government of Brussels-Capital Region, underlined the importance of setting the foundations for a Kanal collection and “leaving the inhabitants of our region a heritage consisting of contemporary art from Brussels for the 21 century”.