Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Day Trip, Brussels


I went to Brussels for the day on June 29. My first destination was the Royal Museums of Art and History to see a exhibition of ethnic jewelry, "Quand le corps se fait parure." I asked for help finding the show at the info desk and was personally escorted to the room by a very nice woman. She spoke enough English to tell me I also had to go to this other room where I could see more jewelry...The ethnic show included different kinds of body adornment from jewelry to tattoos. Next, as I made my way to the room the docent had pointed out to me, I stumbled upon a room of hearts, Musée du coeur. The collection, donated by a cardiologist, is extensive and includes antique heart jewelry to devotional works to Valentine's. Then I walked upstairs to "Precosia," an exhibition of precious personal objects from the 18th century: jewelry, fans, eye glasses, miniature portraits, writing kits, whistles, and trinket boxes. This collection was incredible and brought tears to my eyes. As a metalsmith and devoted follower of the history of my craft, I was moved by how beautiful everything was, perfectly preserved. I even got to see several chatelaines, the accessory I studied for my BFA thesis in 2002. I had never seen one before! After this I made my way to the Costume and Lace Museum to see an exhibition of 18th century clothing and lace. This, too, was absolutely exquisite! I completed my trip with some contemporary jewelry at Joya Brussels and Les Précieuses, both with very different, but very appealing work. 
feathered armbands from South America
 wire bracelet with carved bone or ivory
 detail of a writing kit
 18th century costume
  18th century shoes
 window display at Les Précieuses
 interior of Joya Brussels

Lots more on Flickr. I hope you will visit the set. There are more images of the jewelry and clothing I saw as well as lots of pictures of the incredible architecture of the city and other things I found interesting.

Thanks for reading.

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