Since its establishment in 2008, Mu.ZEE vzw has managed the collections of the province of West Flanders, today the Flemish Community, and the city of Ostend. The museum collection, comprising more than 8000 works of art, provides an overview of Belgian visual art from 1830 until the present day. Artists such as James Ensor, Léon Spilliaert and Constant Permeke are well represented. In addition, there are important sub-collections of interwar artists, ensembles of artists working after World War II and from the 1980s and 1990s. Thanks to an active purchase and donation policy, Mu.ZEE has been able to acquire a number of works of art from contemporary artists.
You can familiarise yourself with a variety of works from the collection at presentations and exhibitions. We bring you works of art by means of digital access to the collection. Gradually, selections are appearing on this web page. Search filters allow you to browse through our museum collection.
An initial selection relates to the works of art that we evaluated in a project subsidised by the Flemish Government (2018-2019). Within the collection evaluation process, employees of Mu.ZEE, together with various partners from the socio-cultural field, examined part of the museum collection. The importance of the collection and the way in which the various works of art are valuable to the museum were considered. By appreciating works of art, we give meaning and context to the creations. We increase knowledge of our works of art and try to arrive at new interpretations and connections. We invite you to navigate through this selection.
In addition, we also present the results of the digital collection registration catch-up movement. Discover the artworks of James Ensor, Léon Spilliaert, Constant Permeke and contemporaries. Through a project grant from the Flemish Government, Mu.ZEE was able to extensively record the works of art of the three ‘Ostend’ great masters for one year. This selection enables you to familiarise yourself with the Ostend of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century and demonstrates the importance of these works in the Mu.ZEE collection.
For Mu.ZEE, 2021 meant a new set-up with our own collection in a scenography by the Rotor collective. The new exhibition is the first in a multi-annual cycle that aims to revalue the Mu.ZEE collection. By using changes, rearrangements and documentation, we discover the richness of the collection. We will continue to do so right up to the point when the building will undergo a major renovation in 2024. For the first arrangement, a chronological presentation was chosen. It allows a walk through the history of art in Belgium and the search for artistic relationships in the collection. The selected artworks of this first presentation can be found via the link below. The various additions and changes to the collection in the coming years will also find their way to this collection page.
Click here to go to the online platform of the Mu.ZEE collection
Click here to view the online platform of Heritage Insight
Our collection is also available on the websites of the Vlaamse Kunstcollectie vzw, an umbrella organisation for visual arts museums in Flanders: