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Roger Raveel Museum in Machelen-aan-de-Leie

The Roger Raveel Museum is a museum in the East Flemish Machelen-aan-de-Leie (municipality of Zulte).

The museum is entirely dedicated to the life and work of Roger Raveel. A must visit for Raveel enthusiasts. And if you weren’t an enthusiast yet, you will become one there. There, in Machelen, at the place where Raveel has lived all his life.

Raveel and Wyckaert
The museum regularly organizes exhibitions centered around Raveel. The exhibition Informele streken – Maurice Wyckaert & Roger Raveel (Informal regions/strokes – Maurice Wyckaert & Roger Raveel) is currently running (until March 3, 2024). This exhibition brings together works by Roger Raveel and Maurice Wyckaert, contemporaries and friends, from the period 1955 to 1963. During this period, both painters experiment with colour, brushstrokes and format. Both painters advocate new, fresh and free painting.

The museum shows a wide selection of Raveel works from its own collection, which testify to his love for painting, nature and the simplicity of life. Compositions full of flowing lines, streaks and intense areas of colour. The famous Raveel square makes its appearance during this period.

Maurice Wyckaert, Vues en profondeur, 1957
Oil on canvas, 124 x 99 cm
Collection S.M.A.K. (loan Flemish Community)

The exhibition ‘Zulma – Muze en manager’ (Zulma – Muse and manager) is a tribute to Zulma De Nijs, the woman who was not only Roger Raveel’s muse, but also his manager. Zulma was everything to Raveel. She is clearly recognizable in Raveel’s early work. She was the model for paintings that have now become classics such as ‘Woman with red arm’ (1949), ‘Woman with revolver’ (1950) or ‘Woman with decorative mirror’ (1953).
Raveel later also frequently depicted her in drawings, etchings and paintings. Zulma at the table, playing cards, solving a crossword puzzle, at the window, looking at the studio, and so on.
Zulma’s life was filled with Raveel’s artistry. She always stood up for him, fought against the misrecognition of his work in the early years and did not hesitate to blast critics.

The essence
While the exhibition ‘Zulma – Muze en manager’ continues until May 5, the exhibition ‘Roger Raveel – De essentie’ (Roger Raveel – The Essence) will be opened in the meantime on March 23, 2024. This exhibition contains a wide selection of works from the collection of the Roger Raveel Museum. In addition to paintings and drawings, numerous elements that recur in the painter’s oeuvre are shown, such as concrete walls and posts, the white squares, the cat, the bicycle trailer, Zulma and father Gustaaf.
The exhibition ‘Roger Raveel – De essentie’ runs until October 6, 2024.

Address and contact details of the Roger Raveel Museum: Gildestraat 2-8, 9870 Machelen-aan-de-Leie (municipality of Zulte), Belgium, 0032 09 381 60 00,
Opening hours: Wednesday to Sunday 11 am to 5 pm. Closed Monday and Tuesday.

Roger Raveel, untitled, 1956
Oil on hardboard, 121.5 x 89 cm
Collection Roger Raveel Museum

Bright, often unmixed colours also play a leading role in Maurice Wyckaert’s paintings and drawings. The organic forms in his work do not arise from a desire for abstraction, but rather from an attempt to break free from painterly doctrines. Wyckaert, like Raveel, tries to return to the essence. Driven by intuition, Wyckaert’s work evolves during this period from a thick mass of paint to ‘landscapes’ that can breathe fully.

Muse and manager
If you visit the Roger Raveel Museum no later than March 3, 2024 (the last day that the ‘Informele streken’ exhibition will run), you will get two for one, as, from February 11, the exhibition Zulma – Muze en manager will also be on display at the Raveel Museum (until May 5, 2024).

Roger Raveel, Vrouw, 1949
Oil on paper on hardboard, 64 x 55.5 cm
Collection Roger Raveel Museum

Roger Raveel, Een schip vaart voorbij, 1971
Oil on canvas, 114 x 145 cm
Collection Roger Raveel Museum