Made in Belgium • Harry Gruyaert • Magnum Photos

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Art

Made in Belgium

Along with fellow artist Hugo Claus, Harry Gruyaert tackles his conflicting emotions towards his homeland of Belgium with his trademark use of color

Harry Gruyaert

Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium 'Palais des Beaux Art' Museum, Magritte painting. Brussels, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert Local fair. Flanders region. Province of Antwerpen, Belgium. 1988. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Commemoration of the Battle of Waterloo. Village in the Province of Brabant, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert Province of Brabant, near the town of Wavre. Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert "Midi" train station district. Brussels, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Carnival. Antwerp, Belgium. 1992. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium 'Rue Royale'. Brussels, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Funeral parlor. Ypres, Belgium. 1988. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Place Flagey. Brussels, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Town of Liège. Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Launderette. Antwerpen, Flanders, Belgium. 1988. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium 'Bal du Rat mort', carnival at the casino. Annual event, on the beginning of the month of March. In aid of charity, this fancy dress ball is one of the most important and prestigious of Europe. Ost (...)
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium 'Foire Du Midi', annual fairground. Brussels, Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos
Harry Gruyaert | Made in Belgium Trans-Europe-Express. Belgium. 1981. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos

This original book, Made in Belgium, combines the work of two Belgian artists: the writer Hugo Claus and the photographer Harry Gruyaert. Both of them try to express here the ambivalent feeling they have towards their country, wavering between love and hate.

Harry Gruyaert, who came back to his country after having gone away from it for some time, aimed at avoiding yielding to melancholy. That is why he discarded black and white photography and chose the realism of bright colours, for they allowed him to render the strength of what he considers the major two phenomena that he witnessed there: attachment to traditions and rapid Americanization. Such a dual perception of the country accounts for the variety of subjects characterizing that book.