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11 December 2018 to 17 March 2019

Temporary exhibition

Fernand Khnopff (1858-1921)

The master of enigma

Avenue Winston Churchill 75008 Paris

Tel : 01 53 43 40 00

Free : - 18 ans

Open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday to Sunday


Open on Friday until 9 p.m.

A rare artist, this Belgian master of Symbolism has not had a retrospective in Paris for nearly forty years.

The exhibition brings together around one hundred emblematic examples of the complex aesthetic of Fernand Khnopff, who was a painter, draftsman, engraver, sculptor and the stage director of his personal work.

The artist toys with themes, from portraits to dreamlike memories, from fantasy to the nude, and invites reverie and a meditation on identity. Khnopff’s major works are counterpointed with those of artistic contemporaries, from Gustave Moreau to Klimt and Von Stuck, which allows situating him in the context of fin-de-siècle Europe. The exhibition design attempts to re-create the initiatory pathway of the false dwelling that served as his workshop, like the

one in Stoclet Palace in Brussels, where Belgian and Viennese aesthetics encountered each other. Non-chronological, it presents instead the major themes that permeate Khnopff’s work: from landscapes, portraits of children and reveries inspired by the Flemish Primitives to memories of Bruges-la-Morte and the complex use of photography, all the way to personal mythologies under the sign of Hypnos.



Michel Draguet, Director of the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium; Christophe Leribault, Director of the Petit Palais; Dominique Morel, Chief Curator at the Petit Palais