Baudelaire >< Brussels

September 7, 2017 > March 11, 2018

Near the end of his life, Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867) spent two years in Brussels, from 1864 to 1866. A period of resentment, illness, and misery led Baudelaire, author of Les Fleurs du Mal, to write an offensive and aggressive pamphlet – unpublished in his lifetime – against Belgium and particularly Brussels, which he entitled Pauvre Belgique!.

Between swear words and insults, the exhibition offers visitors the opportunity to discover 1860s Brussels as seen through the eyes of Baudelaire, their guide. This was the Brussels of the waning years of Leopold I's reign, of the Senne, of black soap, and of the first photographs. To soften the dark outlook of the author, special guests – some of whom were Baudelaire's friends or acquaintances, such as Nadar, Victor Hugo, the Stevens brothers, Camille Lemonnier, Georges Barral – complement the portrait drawn of the town.

Most of the works on display come from the City of Brussels' museum or archive collections. It will be an unprecedented glimpse at little-known works from the 19th century. 

Conferences (in French)

14/09/17 - 18:30
Baudelaire and Dandyism
Conference by the Ambassador of France to the Kingdom of Belgium, Claude-France
Arnould. Gothic Room at the Brussels Town Hall

28/09/17 - 18:30
Baudelaire in Brussels
Interview with Jean-Baptiste Baronian, writer and author of Baudelaire au pays des singes,
Pierre-Guillaume De Roux, 2017

25/01/18 - 18:30
Baudelaire and Rops
Conference by Véronique Carpiaux, Curator at the Félicien Rops Museum, Namur

08/02/18 - 18:30
Baudelaire and the Baroque
Interview with André Guyaux, Professor of French Literature at Paris-Sorbonne University

22/02/18 - 18:30
Baudelaire, the Revolutionary
By Isabelle Viéville-Degeorges, author of Baudelaire clandestin de lui-même, Publisher Léo
Scheer, 2011. As part of '2018, Year of Contestation'

The Maison du Roi (with the exception of Baudelaire and Dandyism)
Admission: €8, €6, €4, €0
Bookings : brusselsculture@brucity.be


Guided tours

For Schools ans social organisations
Guided tour of the exhibition
Fare: €50 per group

Walk in town
In the footsteps of Charles Baudelaire, A unique Tour (1:30)
Entrance: €50 per group

For Adults
Guided tour of the exhibition
Fare: €75 (weekdays) or €90 (weekends) + entry price per person.

Walk in town
In the Footsteps of Charles Baudelaire, A unique Tour (1:30)
Entrance:  €75 (weekdays) or €90 (weekends) + entry price per person.


Online reservation