“Designed Landscapes – Brussels 1775-2020” at CIVA Brussels

Designed Landscapes proposes a new perspective on the Brussels Region landscape, leading to discover the exceptionnal history of its parks and public gardens. Through original documents, partly unreleased, the exhibition offers an overall vision on the landscape creations between 1775 and the contemporary period, their authors as well as the historical and political context.


Nord Au Nord Catherine Mosbach Civa © CIVA


The exhibition aims to position Brussels’ landscape creations in an international cultural frame and to give value to the specific tools employed by a landscape designer.To understand the vast temporal arc that extends from the 1775s to the contemporary period, this is the ambition that the CIVA has set itself to give the visitor a real overview of the landscape creations of the capital. Not only the works – parks, gardens, avenues planted – but also their authors, often unknown, will be highlighted during this exhibition.


Practical Information

“Designed Landscapes – Brussels 1775-2020”
November 16, 2018 – March 31, 2019
CIVA Brussels
Rue de l’Ermitage Kluis 55, Brussels


On a vast timeline that unfolds in the great room of the CIVA, the visitor will discover, throughout his career, the succession of great stylistic eras, moments of rupture, changes in fashion and taste … But he can also, in a multistake reading, discover the major historical and political events, contemporary artistic movements (visual arts, architecture, music …), and compare Brussels creations with those of other European capitals: Paris, New York , Berlin …


Civa Designed Landscapes © CIVA

Porte de Ninove © CIVA


The originality of the development of Brussels’ landscaped areas is undeniable, but it has rarely been put in context with the creations of other major capitals. What was happening in Paris, London or Berlin when Leopold II imagined large parks for Brussels? What were the big models, the influences? What are the trends in contemporary practice?


Barnabe Guimard Plan Parc de Bruxelles-Park Van Brussel © CIVA

Henry Beyaert Petit Sablon – Kleine Zavel © CIVA


All this, the visitor can discover during his wandering, which is also enriched by the presentation of original and rare documents and objects never shown: plans, manuscripts, sculptures, paintings … A section is particularly dedicated to the figure the landscape architect and his “tools”, and highlights the work on the topography, the use of water, vegetation, but also the work on the dimension of time.


Civa Designed Landscapes © CIVA

Henri Bava Agence Ter. Civa Nantes Perspective © CIVA


A section dedicated to the horticulture makes it possible to grasp the importance of the vegetable palette, and its evolution over the centuries. Thus, this exhibition invites the visitor to discover the many facets of Brussels landscape art, allowing it to be placed in a broad context, but also to grasp the way in which these spaces, imagined and drawn over the centuries, have profoundly shaped the the face of the city as we know it today.


Andre Vera © CIVA


News source: CIVA Brussels
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