Exhibition at the museum

Léon Spilliaert (1881-1946). Light and solitude

From October 13th, 2020 to January 10th, 2021 -
Musée d'Orsay
Esplanade Valéry Giscard d'Estaing
75007 Paris
Map & itinerary
Léon Spilliaert-Portrait de l'artiste par lui-même
Léon Spilliaert
Portrait de l'artiste par lui-même, 1903
Paris, musée d'Orsay, conservé au département des Arts Graphiques du musée du Louvre
ADAGP © RMN-Grand Palais (Musée d'Orsay) / Thierry Le Mage / © RMN / Réunion des Musées Nationaux

Léon Spilliaert was a man of troubling solitude and infinite perspectives. Drawing on metaphysical questions and Flemish culture, he surprises and mystifies with his uncategorisable works, inventing a symbolism of inner darkness that has marked Belgian art.
He was inspired by the pictorial works of Odilon Redon and James Ensor, as well as the writings of Émile Verhaeren and Maurice Maeterlinck. Yet although he fell under the influence of end of the century Symbolism, his work went far beyond. His wild-eyed faces flirt with expressionism; his sleek landscapes seem to tend towards minimalism.
The exhibition - the first in France for nearly 40 years - will concentrate on the years 1900 to 1919, the most intense in his creation, and will present Spilliaert’s most radical works.

The exhibition is now over.

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Detailed presentation of the exhibition