25

In 1915 the Ghent-born author and journalist Paul-Gustave ('Gust') van Hecke moved to Brussels, where he remained until his dying day. Initially he worked as a correspondent for the activist newspaper De Vlaamsche Post; then he worked in the world of theatre before setting himself up as a couturier on Avenue Louise after the war. With the proceeds from the fashion house Norine, van Hecke threw himself into the art world. In his gallery Sélection, and in the magazine of the same name, he promoted contemporary art of the time – primarily the Flemish expressionists Constant Permeke, Gust De Smet and Frits Van den Berghe. In the 1920s he did the same for Belgian surrealism, and René Magritte in particular, with the art gallery L'Époque and the magazine Variétés.
In the 1930s he was co-founder of the art association L'art vivant, which organised a few major modern art exhibitions in the Centre for Fine Arts. After the Second World War van Hecke was general director of the First International Film Festival in Brussels. He remained director of the Pathé cinemas in Brussels right up to a grand old age.

Manu van der Aa, author of the recently published biography Tatave! Paul-Gustave van Hecke. Kunstpaus – modekoning – salonsocialist, takes you on a journey through this fascinating figure’s tantalising life.

Afterwards there is an opportunity to purchase the biography.