The Low Countries

Deze Engelstalige blog, gelinkt aan het jaarboek The Low Countries, brengt nieuws over taal, cultuur en maatschappij in de Lage Landen voor een breed buitenlands publiek.

  • 30 juni 2009

Meet James Ensor at the MoMA

A major James Ensor show opened at the MoMA in New York, where – incidentally – until July 27 you can still go see a number of installations questioning the nature of reality and subverting the traditional relationship between viewer and viewed by contemporary Dutch artist Aernout Mik, on June 28. Ensor (1860–1949), the Ostend ‘prince of painters’, was a Flemish artist of considerable stature and along with Gauguin, Van Gogh and Munch a pioneer of modern European a…

  • 26 juni 2009

Dutch Literature Gets a A Leg Up from the British Arts Council

Lending Dutch literature and writers a much-needed hand in their international dealings: that could be one description of the work done by the Foundation for the Production and Translation of Dutch Literature. The Foundation’s own mission statement says that it exists 'to promote interest in Dutch-language literature abroad.’ It maintains contacts with a large number of international publishers, and has a stand at major international book fairs, including the Frank…

  • 15 juni 2009

Music, Maestro! : Ghent becomes UNESCO City of Music

The Pole Pole Festival stage, bridging one of the city's landmark canals (Ghent festival, 2008).The Flemish city of Ghent has been recognised by UNESCO as an international City of Music, thus joining Bologna, Sevilla and Glasgow on a select list. UNESCO indicates on its website a number of criteria and characteristics as guidelines for cities wishing to join this network, such as the presence of recognised centres of musical creation and activity, experience in hos…

  • 11 juni 2009

A Pure Translator: NWS Premier’s Translation Prize and PEN Medallion for David Colmer

David Colmer (photo by Ronald Hoeben)David Colmer has been awarded the biennial New South Wales Premier’s Translation Prize & PEN Medallion for the body of translations from the Dutch he has produced so far. The jury report makes mention of the large number of recently translated Dutch books: ‘The Dutch are well known for their long history of publishing translations from many other languages, but the publication of large numbers of Dutch authors in English transla…

  • 3 juni 2009

Picture Perfect: Wiki Loves Art in the Netherlands

The first picture entered for Wiki Loves Art in the Netherlands: a photo of a priest's ring, taken by Sindala in the Amsterdam Jewish Historical Museum. Restrictive museum photo policies can be a drag when you desperately want to test your new expensive camera on that one gorgeous work of art you’ve always wanted to see. This month, the Van Gogh Museum, NEMO and the corporate art collection of the ING Bank will welcome volunteers who come to take photos of their …

  • 25 mei 2009

Armadillos and Cacao Beans in Antwerp: In the Wake of Columbus

Armadillos, the most common of Florida's roadkill victims, and cacao, the best comfort food for your days of romantic agony, are on display at the Antwerp Plantin-Moretus Museum these days. They’re part of the In the wake of Columbus. Antwerp Books and Prints around the World exhibition, which runs until July 19.The Plantin-Moretus Museum, as Pierre Delsaerdt wrote in the yearbook The Low Countries, is renowned for its exceptionally well-preserved interior and envi…

  • 5 mei 2009

A Small Case of Canonization: CUA Young Faculty Research Award for Flemish Professor

Kurt Martens (second from the left), assistant professor of canon law, at the CUA Celebration of Research and Scholarship reception.Blessed are the meek, but being celebrated can go a long way towards inheriting the earth as well. The Catholic University of America (CUA, Washington D.C.) bestowed awards on three of its professors for excellence in research at the Celebration of Research and Scholarship reception held at the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center on A…

  • 5 mei 2009

The C-Factor: Calvinism, Dutchness and All that Jazz

In the new issue of the yearbook The Low Countries Mirjam van Veen wonders how Calvinist the Netherlands really are, on the occasion of the commemoration of Calvin’s five hundredth birthday in 2009. She comes to the conclusion that Calvinism was an important feature in the Dutch landscape, but the same was true of other Christian persuasions: ‘On a number of points, such as the tense relationship towards the government and an activist desire to improve the world, w…

  • 27 april 2009

Get Comfortably Discontented with Us: The Low Countries Yearbook no. 17 is on its Way

Things have been a bit quiet on this western front, but by no means is this a case of extended slacking. Nor has it anything to do with prolonged easter egg hunts. Let's call it a calm before the storm.'First things first' is always a good rule of thumb, and in this particular case that first thing was the new issue of the yearbook The Low Countries. April 28, 2009 sees the appearance of the seventeenth yearbook The Low Countries. Arts and Society in Flanders and t…