CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Exhibition Colard Mansion

A visit to the exhibition Haute Lecture by Colard Mansion: Innovating Text and Image in Medieval Bruges at the Groeningemuseum with the curators Ludo Vandamme, Evelien Hauwaerts, and Evelien de Wilde

Bruges Public Library holds one of the most important collections of incunabula by Colard Mansion (active 1457–1484) in the world. This collection constitutes the nucleus of the exhibition on Mansion, who was active in Bruges as a scribe, printer, and book producer.

Colard Mansion (before 1440 – after 1484) Page from the Ovide Moralisé, with woodcut and added illumination, Public Library, Bruges

The project is a co-production of Bruges Public Library and the Groeningemuseum, in close collaboration with a committee of experts in the fields of art history, social history, and book studies. The exhibition sheds new light on Mansion’s manuscripts and incunabula within the international world of book production and bookselling in Bruges, the traditional and more innovative aspects of his oeuvre, his role as an entrepreneur, his network, and the provenance of his works. Since Mansion was one of the first book producers to experiment with engraved illustrations in printed books, the exhibition places his oeuvre in an interdisciplinary context. It looks at subjects such as the combination of different techniques within a single medium, tradition versus innovation, and networks that cross artistic boundaries. A rich selection of manuscripts, incunabula, and engravings will be on show, as well as woodcuts, paintings, metal objects, and archival documents.