Victor Horta, leader of the Art Nouveau Movement

Born on the 6th of January 1861, Victor Horta is one of the greatest architects in Belgium. He entered into the Academy of Fine Arts of Gand in 1873 then was integrated into the Parisian workshop of Jules Debuysson, an architect and interior designer.

Eight years later, on his return to Belgium he completed a placement with Balat, the favourite architect of Leopold II. With his project of parliament, Horta won first prize in 1884 then very quickly exercised his know-how at Gand in Brussels. His accomplishments are numerous, notably the Maison Matyn (where his daughter Simone was born), the Maison Autrique, the Maison Tassel, the Maison Frison, the Hotel Solvay and Brugmann Hospital.

In 1912, Victor Horta was put in charge of a re-organising the courses at the Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels. Of which he then became director. In 1932 he was elevated to the title of Baron and died on the 8th of September 1947.

What is Art Nouveau?

Art Nouveau had its best years and its most beautiful successes with Victor Horta. In reality, this art, which the architect manipulated so well with his styles of the period, goes hand in hand with the emergence of a new society in which the bourgeoisie displayed success and prominence.

Thus, Nouveau Art was distinctive in its use of many colours and abundant ornamentation often inspired by nature.

In the district of Ixelles, you will discover many houses of the art nouveau period, and in particular the Horta museum, home and workshop of the master, which offers, with its metallic structure and its rounded windows, a fine example of this architectural style.