Historical Context of Belgium
During the 1930s, Belgian art was to play a key role in Surrealism, especially through the work of Rene Magritte and Paul Delvaux. Other important Belgian artists of the twentieth century include Marcel Broodthaers, Wim Delvoye, Francis Alys and Luc Tuymans. In the late 19th century, as the era of the avant-garde in Europe began, the Belgian capital of Brussels was an important hub for the Art Nouveau movement, which included the architect Victor Horta amongst its founders. The Symbolist movement was also a key artistic trend that was greatly influenced by Belgian artists. Key practitioners of this important early precursor to Surrealism include Léon Spilliaert, Jean Delville, Fernand Khnopff and James Ensor.