An exceptional exhibition by Léon Spilliaert at Galerie Patrick Derom in Brussels

16.02.2024 ​ - ​ 13.04.2024

Galerie Patrick Derom in Brussels is presenting an exceptional exhibition by Léon Spilliaert (Ostend 1881-Brussels 1946). The exhibition brings together twenty-one works on paper, some of which have never before been shown to the public.

The exhibition covers Spilliaert's entire career, with early works such as the sombre Landscape with Sign (1904), mature works such as the luminous Blue and Yellow Seascape (c. 1934), and late works such as the enigmatic The Open Door, Waiting (c. 1945).

The exhibition is divided into five sections, each focusing on a different aspect of Spilliaert's work, allowing visitors to familiarise themselves with lesser-known elements of his art.

The accompanying catalogue, published by Snoeck, offers a unique testimony by the grandson and describes in short chapters the artistic contribution of the works on display.

For a private gallery to have the opportunity to present a large selection of works by an artist as prestigious as Spilliaert is, these days, a rare privilege. So it's hardly surprising that the gallery enthusiastically accepted the invitation from Johan van Rossum, the artist's grandson, to exhibit an exceptional group of works that have always remained in the family.

This initiative, however, did not come out of the blue. Since its creation some forty years ago, Patrick Derom Gallery has made the representation and promotion of Spilliaert one of its pillars. In the 1980s and 1990s, the gallery worked closely with Francine-Claire Legrand, former curator of modern art at Belgium's Royal Museums of Fine Arts and an undisputed specialist in the artist's work. Over the years, the gallery has offered the market some remarkable seascapes and self-portraits. And it has always been delighted to find first-rate private and public collections to house these significant works. In 2005, for example, the gallery sold the artist's -Self-portrait "with masks" (1903) to the Musée d'Orsay.

Léon SPILLIAERT. Wandering through Silence ​
Johan van Rossum Family Collection
16.02.2024 ​ - ​ 13.04.2024
Patrick Derom Gallery
Rue aux Laines 1, 1000 Brussels


The catalogue accompanying the exhibition provides an overview of the history of the discovery of Spilliaert's work in Belgium and abroad, and places the work in a broader context. It presents the unique testimony of the artist's grandson and recounts in short chapters the original artistic contribution of the works presented. With texts by Spilliaert specialists Anne Adriaens-Pannier, Édouard Derom and Jeffery Howe, and an interview with Spilliaert's grandson, Johan van Rossum.

Published by Snoeck

Léon Spilliaert

The works of Spilliaert (Ostend 1881-Brussels 1946) fascinate through the mystery of their images. As a draughtsman, he explored the solitude of human beings and the immensity of the sea. He evoked the life of the places in his native Ostend and the objects of his daily life. His striking self-portraits convey the anguish of the search for the depths of his being. His creations reflect a spirit of reflection and spiritual meditation.

Selection of images



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