As part of the Fondation Folon’s 20th birthday celebrations, Villers-la-Ville Abbey – in partnership with the Fondation Folon – hosted an exhibition featuring around twenty original monumental sculptures by Folon. A beautiful coffee table book featuring the artist’s sculptures was produced to accompany the exhibition (pub. Fonds Mercator).
A prestigious architectural monument
The Abbey’s idea of exhibiting around 20 sculptures, including some of the most evocative the artist ever created, was in keeping with Folon’s cherished tradition of setting his works amid the splendour of a monumental historical and architectural site and observing the effects of changing light and seasons on them. The sculptures reflected both the spirituality that permeates the old stones of the Cistercian abbey and the colours of autumn and winter.
Exceptional settings for monumental sculptures
Originally an illustrator and painter, Jean-Michel Folon (1934-2005) added a new string to his bow when he took up sculpture in the late 1980s. He held his first exhibition of monumental sculptures in the Place du Petit Sablon in Brussels in 1995. Other exhibitions followed in remarkable places: the Château de Seneffe in 1996, the small Tuscan town of Pietrasanta in 1999, the Castelo de Sao Jorge in Lisbon in 2001, and at the Forte di Belvedere in Florence in 2005. Several memorable exhibitions were also staged after the artist’s death, such as the one at the Solvay Regional Estate in La Hulpe in 2008 and another, more recently, in Saint Tropez in 2019.