The Maison Hannon contributes to the restoration of the Rousseau album with drawings by James Ensor

2024 marks the 75th anniversary of the death of James Ensor, the Belgian symbolist artist. This special year has been declared "Ensor Year", with various activities and exhibitions across Belgium. Maison Hannon is participating in its own way in this commemoration! 

During the anniversary weekend, all proceeds will be donated to the KBR and MRBAB crowdfunding campaign aimed at restoring an album containing drawings by Ensor, that were compiled by Mariette Hannon-Rousseau. The museum aims to show its support for heritage and affirm its solidarity towards projects led by other cultural institutions. This choice naturally arose given the close ties that Mariette Hannon-Rousseau, sister of Édouard Hannon, maintained with the symbolist artist. The Hannon couple indeed owned works by James Ensor, now exhibited at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. Furthermore, in a significant letter from the Ostend painter to Édouard Hannon, Ensor confesses to having lost the taste for painting to dedicate himself to printmaking. 


“The story unfolds in the Rousseau family home in Ixelles, literally Ensor’s second home. Introduced by Théo Hannon, a painter, Ensor became friends with Mariette Hannon, sister to Théo, and married to Ernest Rousseau who became the family’s guardian upon the death of their father. The Rousseau’s not only supported Ensor as friends but also as patrons, with Mariette serving as his “logistics manager,” supplying art materials and liaising with Brussels printers.  

Their strong friendship is documented in dozens of letters compiled by Mariette in the “Rousseau” album. These letters reveal a vulnerable and sensitive side of the artist, expressing his affection for Mariette and her family.” 


(source : KBR