The Low Countries

La rédaction des annales The Low Countries possède un blog en langue anglaise où elle suit l'actualité littéraire, culturelle et sociale, tant en Flandre qu'aux Pays-Bas.

  • 24 avril 2018

The Low Countries Yearbook 26 Is Out - What Do You Think About Its Digital Future?

The Low Countries Yearbook 26 Is Out - What Do You Think About Its Digital Future?

The 2018 issue of The Low Countries yearbook is out now. The theme of this volume is: ‘About suffering they were never wrong, The old Masters’ - Dutch and Flemish Artists Around the Globe. Find out more here

The theme of this yearbook was developed jointly with CODART, the international network of curators of Dutch and Flemish art which this year celebrates its twentieth year.

This twenty-sixth edition of The Low Countries will be the last ever in print. With pride – and a little melancholy – the editorial board looks back on those twenty-six volumes.

But don’t worry. From next year you can find us at www.thelowcountries.eu where we will continue with the same fervour and depth to publish information, comment and essays about the Low Countries. For more people. We still have a lot more to tell. 

In this context, we would like to hear your opinion on what should be located on such a web platform.

You can fill out the survey here.

Thank you in advance for your willing cooperation.

  • 10 avril 2018

Van Gogh’s Japonism on View in Amsterdam

Van Gogh’s Japonism on View in Amsterdam

The exhibition Van Gogh & Japan is on view at Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam until 24 /6/2018.

Like Monet and Paul Gauguin, Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) was impressed by Japanese prints which had flooded the European market since the mid nineteenth century. Landscapes, portraits and street scenes inspired him. He was indisputably influenced by the pronounced colours and abstract figures, prominent composition, robust contour lines and motifs abruptly cut off by the edge of the picture.

In the end Japan became a kind of personal ideal for the painter. Sunny southern France was his mirror for Japan, where he found a model for an artisanal alliance with painter colleagues. In 1888 he painted a self-portrait, with a thin face, close-cropped hair and eyes somewhat askance, like a Japanese ascetic. Nevertheless he continued to opt for his own wilful style over the refinement of the Japanese prints.

  • 19 mars 2018

The Clever Letter Thief - Ten Years after the Death of Hugo Claus

The Clever Letter Thief - Ten Years after the Death of Hugo Claus

Exactly ten years ago today, the Flemish writer Hugo Claus passed away. He was 78 years old.

For many, Hugo Claus is the greatest Flemish writer of the second half of the 20th century. In 1986 he received the triennial Dutch Letters Prize, the highest literary distinction in Dutch. A prolific author, he has worked in many fields, publishing over twenty novels, dozens of plays and thousands of poems. He has also exercised his talents as a painter and film director.

Claus had the art of varying the registers better than anyone else, happily alternating the tragic, the sublime, the classical, the burlesque and the flatter obscene. His favourite themes were love for the mother, the difficult contact with the father (absent), sexuality (incipient), the feeling of guilt linked to the Catholic faith, and Flanders during and after the war.

Read four of his poems and a portrait of this clever letter thief in this blog post. 

  • 14 mars 2018

Belgium and the Netherlands: Small Welfare States in the European Union

Belgium and the Netherlands: Small Welfare States in the European Union

The persistent differences between the Netherlands and Belgium illustrate precisely that the European Union does not create uniformity among its member states”, writes former Belgian minister and current professor at the University of Amsterdam Frank Vandenbroucke in an interesting article about these two small welfare states, that can be successful in the European Union, but must not be ‘small’ in their view of the EU” . 

This article, which you can read in full in this blog post, is a summary of the Pacification Lecture Vandenbroucke delivered on 11 November 2017 in Breda. The complete lecture can be found, in Dutch, on www.pacificatielezingen.org.

Translated by Lindsay Edwards / Photo © Jeroen Oerlemans

  • 27 février 2018

Scottish Poetry Festival StAnza Focuses on the Low Countries

Scottish Poetry Festival StAnza Focuses on the Low Countries

StAnza, Scotland’s international poetry festival, will focus on Dutch and Flemish poetry this year under the title ‘Going Dutch’, with special attention for the languages and cultures of the Low Countries: Dutch, Flemish and Frisian. 

A number of award-winning Dutch, Flemish and Frisian poets are among the big names from the literary world who will read and perform, including Ester Naomi Perquin, Jan Baeke, Thomas Möhlmann, Frank Starik, Tsead Bruinja, Sigrid Kingma, Geart Tigchelaar, Lies Van Gasse (photo), Maud Vanhauwaert and Andy Fierens.

  • 30 novembre 2017

Karen Van Godtsenhoven Appointed as Curator at New York’s Metropolitan Museum

Karen Van Godtsenhoven Appointed as Curator at New York’s Metropolitan Museum

Flemish curator Karen Van Godtsenhoven recently started work at the Costume Institute at New York’s prestigious Metropolitan Museum.

An expert on 20th and 21st century fashion, she previously worked as curator of Antwerp’s ModeMuseum from 2009.

In an interview on a Belgian news channel Van Godtsenhoven described her role working with director Andrew Bolton, highlighting the importance of setting the department in the wider context of the museum and drawing connections with different branches of art. 

Situated on the east side of New York’s Central Park, the Met is one of the most important art museums in the world, receiving millions of visitors a year. 

Van Godtsenhoven holds a B.A. in Germanic Philology, an M.A. in English Language and Literature and an M.A. in Library and Information Science. She has also carried out postgraduate work in gender studies.