WVU in Europe…Frans Masereel Centrum.

In March, I spent ten days in Europe with students and colleagues from West Virginia University. Officially, two WVU Art History Professors (Janet Snyder and Rhonda Reymond) were conducting GPS: France courses and WVU Photography Professor Michael Sherwin and I were along to help and do some research into our own potential study abroad courses.

On Wednesday, March 8th I traveled to Kasterlee in Belgium to visit the Frans Masereel Centrum. This was one of the main reasons for my own travel to Europe, so see this well known residency center, talk to studio manager Ivan Durt and imagine taking students here one day.

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Herge and Tintin are everywhere…two really good Tintin murals in the train station in Belgium.

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Main building at the Frans Masereel…Katerleee is an hour or so drive out from Brussels…Kasterlee is a relatively small but beautiful town…

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The Frans Masereel is named after the famous Belgian artist of the same name…Masereel was a printmaker who made a few “wordless novels”, which could also be considered to be a precursor to graphic novels…Masereel was inspired by Lyn Ward to make “A Passionate Journey”, probably his best known book.

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“A-Frame” apartments for the resident artists on the grounds…the whole place feels idyllic.

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Business on the inside…Ivan showing us the digital lab with current WVU Print Graduate Student Allison Blair…yes, that is a laser cutter in the background!

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More digital toys…

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There is exhibition space as well…

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Frans Masereel prints on the walls…fitting.

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Letterpress…

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Litho…

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Silkscreen…

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Intaglio…there were about 30 more pictures of the shop that I took, acid room, exposure room, etc…but you get the idea…this place is awesome!

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I cannot thank Ivan enough for taking the time out of his busy day to speak with Allison and I…this was definitely one of the major highlights of our trip…and if it wasn’t for Ivan’s recommendation, we wouldn’t have gone to Antwerp!

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