Mons might not be the first city on your list when you think of Art. But maybe it should be.
The town has developed a versatile art scene featuring everything from neoclassicism to contemporary art and more. Its mentioning in the field of Art, really only began with the moment one of the world’s most famous artists, Vincent van Gogh, moved into town in 1879. Although rich in other history, thereafter much has been quiet in the art scene of this former mining town. Maybe this is also why Van Gogh only actually stayed for a couple of months. But, since the 19th century the city has changed a lot and Van Gogh might have returned if he could see it now. If you are staying with us at our conference hotel in Mons , you will be in walking distance of many of the galleries and museums featured below.
After having held the title of European City of Culture (ECOC) in 2015, the cities repertoire of activities has been greatly boosted. Its streets, are lined with cafés and small Belgian bars, nestled among which you will find art exhibitions & museums. Street art can be found scattered throughout the city. Several galleries focus on supporting the local art-scene.
Now more than ever it is time to visit this Belgian jewel, located in the heart of the Hainaut province. We have listed a number of venues and spots you should see when you visit the city. Our centrally located Hotel, located just across from the Mons station is just a short walk away from the historic centre. Therefore a perfect place to start your discoveries.
When strolling through the city, one of the places you must see is the Grand Place of Mons. Here you will be able to see an Art Display by the name of “The Passenger, designed by the contemporary Artist Arne Quinze, who has been displaying open air art in countless cities. The art piece symbolises the flow of people and the cultural versatility and historic evolution of occupation of the Rue de Nimy since its conception in the 13th century. It has been one of the most important commercial trading center to the province of Hainaut during Middle Ages.
From here throughout the city different Graffiti Artists have left their mark on the cit. So if you’re interested keep your eyes out!
Anciens Abattoirs a is old 19th slaughterhouse, completely converted in 2006 into a contemporary art exhibition space that focusses on integrating with the cultural dynamics of the city. The space is open to the public and on its own already worth seeing. The Grand Hall which is devoted to contemporary plastic creations as well as activities oriented around the creative economy is a 70 meters long and 10 meters wide gallery.
Additionally to the Grand Hall there are two further rooms, the barn and the fridge. These areas are dedicated to BeCraft, a non-profit dedicated to Applied Arts and Creative Valley, which is the creative hub in the heart Hainaut.
BAM Beaux-Arts Mons
This museum hosts exhibitions on an international scale with its 3 floors, almost 2.000m². It is a space where visitors can discover artistic creativity in all its forms, a living environment where events are held throughout the year. It also has stunning views of the city of Mons.
THANKSgalery is a brilliant concept that is dedicated into investing into contemporary artists allowing them to fulfill their projects and display them. The art space is therefore original, versatile and alive. The gallery also offers its doors to jazz concerts, symposiums and artist meetings.
Galerie du Pistolet d’Or
The Galerie du Pistolet d ‘Or is an art gallery specialized in the purchase and sale of works by Belgian and French artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. The gallery exhibits many artists from Hainaut and more particularly those from the School of Mons. In business since 1997, they gallery has over 20 years of experience.
François Duesberg Museum
This museum showcases neoclassic art from 1775-1825 and is located in the city center in a late 19th century building. The exhibition is a prestigious collection of exotic clocks (1795-1815). Actually it is one of the largest in the world. It includes some really exceptional pieces including the stunning “Paul et Virginie” clock. It was commissioned by Napoleon Bonaparte himself in 1802. The museum also includes a remarkable collection of porcelain pieces by some of the best manufacturers from Paris and Brussel. Exquisite gold work, exceptional gilded bronze pieces, antique jewelry and an array of incredibly rare and fascinating objects.
We are looking forward to welcoming you at our centrally located hotel in Mons!