Inside Art Nouveau – that is the name of the new web site which has the goal to showcase the beautiful interiors of Art Nouveau houses in Brussels. The project was created by Urban.Brussels in collaboration with the Réseau Art Nouveau Network (a European network for the study, protection and enhancement of the Art Nouveau heritage).
The website allows visitors to explore Brussels Art Nouveau interiors that are mostly not accessible to the general public. It contains numerous photographs (from the archives as well as contemporary images) and it also includes the most important information about all the buildings that are listed. The idea is to have a real modern tool that offers virtual exploration of these masterpieces from anywhere in the world.
Website is specifically designed to be accessible on different kinds of devices (smartphone, tablets etc) with the goal to offer a chance to uncover what is behind the beautiful facades which are often inaccessible. At the moment, the site includes 80 houses but the goal is to reach 200 and to be as exhaustive – bringing extra value to visitors that cannot be found on other websites.
Guy Conde Reis, who is in charge of cultural development at Urban.brussels noted that Brussels has many Art Nouveau properties (around 400) and that this project has a goal to grow every year. He emphasised that this is especially important because many houses are not accessible which sometimes leads to disappointment for the visitors and Art Nouveau aficionados who are touring the city to discover all the amazing facades. Thanks to this project, people who are walking in the city and making a stop to admire a beautiful building, will now be able to discover its interior and learn what is hidden behind the facade.
Brussels as the capital of Art Nouveau
“We are the capital of Art Nouveau. The movement was born in Brussels,” emphasised Pascal Smet (Brussels State Secretary in charge of urbanism) during the launch of this project. Other cities are doing a lot to promote themselves as “places to be” for this architectural style but Brussels has all ingredients to position itself as the major city for art nouveau aficionados.
Pascal Smet stressed the importance of using this amazing architectural heritage in the promotion of our city. “We have to be innovative and to use our heritage as the identity of our city. This identity of the city is determined by its people, its buildings and its spaces. This is why we need to have an interaction between all of them and to include this in our city branding strategies”, concludes Pascal Smet.
Insideartnouveau.eu is available in French, Dutch and English, and has a goal to inform both Brussels residents and foreign tourists.