Jan Van Eyck 2020
Extended until June 2021
The Ghent Altarpiece is one of the most important works of art in the world. Since its completion in 1432, millions of visitors from all over the world have visited Ghent to see the altarpiece painted by Jan and Hubert van Eyck. After several years of restoration, the Ghent Altarpiece will return to St. Bavo’s Cathedral in 2020. For this reason, Ghent is honouring its great Flemish Master with numerous exhibitions and events: For example, at the "Van Eyck. An Optical Revolution" exhibition in the Museum of Fine Arts, visitors could not only admire the restored outer panels of the Ghent Altarpiece at close range, but also numerous other works by Jan van Eyck, which were then exhibited in Ghent for the first time. Meanwhile, the entire Ghent Altarpiece has returned in all its splendour to St. Bavo’s Cathedral and in the spring of 2021, it will move to a newly built Visitor Centre within the Cathedral. The large floral exhibition "Ghent Floralies" is also dedicated to the important artist, but has been postponed from May 2020 to May 2021 due to Covid-19.
Jan van Eyck had his studio in Bruges and spent most of his life here. Therefore, Bruges is also hosting a series of prestigious exhibitions to celebrate the "Van Eyck Year". The Groeninge Museum, for instance, is focusing on two of his masterpieces. Also, at St. Jans Hospital, an exhibition there will show how Hans Memling still inspires artists today.
The Van Eyck Year marks the end of VISITFLANDERS "Flemish Masters 2018-2020" focus theme, which had to be suspended from mid-March to mid/end of May due to Covid-19. To give visitors the opportunity to experience Van Eyck in all its glory, the city of Ghent has decided to extend the festival year by six months until June 2021.
Highlights of the van Eyck year:
- Van Eyck. An Optical Revolution, Ghent, 1 February to 30 April 2020, Ghent Museum of Fine Arts (prematurely cancelled mid-term due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions)
- Jan van Eyck in Bruges, 12 March to 6 September 2020 Groeninge Museum Bruges (closed from 13 March to 18 May)
- Kris Martin - EXIT, 18 May - 30 August 2020, S.M.A.K., St. Bavo’s Cathedral & Forecourt
- Van Eyck's Colours in Design, 19 May 2020 to 27 February 2021 Design Museum Ghent
- Mat Collishaw’s "Lights on Van Eyck", multimedia installation, 8 June 2020 to 30 June 2021, St. Nicholas Church, Ghent
- Memling Now: Hans Memling in Contemporary Art, 1 October 2020 to 1 February 2021, St. Jan’s Hospital, Bruges
- Opening of the new visitor centre in St Bavo’s Cathedral, spring 2021, St Bavo’s Cathedral, Ghent
- Ghent Floraliën under the sign of Van Eyck, 1 to 9 May 2021, Ghent, International Congress Center (ICC)