Explore Brussels' Antiques and Fine Art fair (Brafa) from 19-26 June
From humble beginnings in 1956, the Brafa Art Fair is now ranked as one of the top five art and antiques fairs in the world.
Some 115 leading galleries are represented at the 2022 edition: 40% from Belgium and 60% from abroad. The foreign contingent includes 14 countries (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Monaco, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, the UAE and the US).
Together, they present works in 20 specialties covering a range of periods and genres, from classical archaeology, pre-Colombian and Asian art and furniture to contemporary art and design, sculpture, ceramics, textiles, books and photography. Visitors will be treated to around 15,000 art works and objects on display (Arschot, a Parisian 17th-century bookbinding pictured).
For this 67th edition, the fair has moved to 15,000 m² quarters at Brussels Expo. Brafa’s exhibitor selection process is rigorous, with all objects verified by an international committee of over 100 experts.
The fair is also reputed for its convivial atmosphere, eclecticism and elegance, says secretary general Christian Vrouyr.
“One of the things that is mostly said when it’s compared to more stiff upper lip fairs is that Brafa has a conviviality that you hardly find in other fairs. It impresses the exhibitors who come from abroad. They feel immediately at home and welcomed.”
For visitors looking to learn more about the artworks and objects on display, the Brafa Art Tours and Brafa Art Talks are an opportunity to deepen their knowledge and appreciation (Paul Delvaux painting by De Jonckheere Gallery pictured).
Annually, close to 70,000 visitors flock to the aisles of the fair: art lovers, collectors, directors of major museums, patrons of Belgian and foreign museums, members of cultural and economic circles, as well as the general public.
The King Baudouin Foundation (KBF) has a stand this year; among its standout pieces are a complete skeleton of an Ice Age rhinoceros (pictured) and Medusa, a pendant by jeweler Philippe Wolfers. It’s an iconic object and is shown alongside other Art Nouveau pieces by Wolfers and Victor Horta.
Guest of honour at the fair this year is Belgian artist Arne Quinze (main image), best known for his monumental sculptures and constructions, but who will be presenting here a recent series of intimate paintings of flowers from his garden (pictured below).
“Even though I’m 50, I’m still the youngest and the first Belgian guest of honour at Brafa. Some 80% of my projects are abroad so it’s certainly a recognition and a pleasure to show my oeuvre in my own capital city. I’m in a line of very important artists, so it’s a really big honour. I invite everyone to enjoy my colourful garden here.”
On a practical note, the fair has a concierge service, restaurants, champagne bars, free Wifi and special parking & access for visitors with reduced mobility.
Brafa art fair
19 to 26 June
Brussels Expo (Laeken). Sorry! Our prize giveaway has now closed and the winners have been notified.