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Doctrinal Nourishment, 1889

  • etching, paper
  • 176 x 245 mm
  • Inv. 1998-B-80

Public Domain

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In this etching from 1889, Ensor sharply criticised the political situation of his time. King Leopold II is shown in the company of the country's two leading parties: on the right the liberals consisting of the army and the bourgeoisie, on the left the Church. The rulers are feeding their followers from the bourgeoisie, the clergy and the army with their excrements. In their hands they hold placards with the demands of the people. Ensor's vision of the political and social situation in Belgium at that time is also expressed in the etching "Belgium in the 19th century" (inv. 1998-B-81).


James Ensor RKD VIAF Wikidata
Ostend 1860 - Ostend 1949

Title Doctrinal Nourishment
Date 1889
Period 19th century
Medium and support etching AAT
Signatures, inscriptions, and markings signature and year bottom right: J Ensor 1889
inscription top right: BELGIQUE EN 1889 / ALIMENTATION DOCTRINAIRE
inscription bottom right: 382
inscription bottom left: 85
inscription on the reverse: AT
title on the reverse: alimentation doctrinaire
inscription on the reverse: D96 / 131.
Collection print room
Object type etching AAT
Inventory number 1998-B-80
Acquisition credit purchase
Taevernier, Auguste (coll.)
Current whereabouts Work currently not on display
IIIF Manifest
Art & Architecture Thesaurus 300056485 fantastic art AAT
Keywords Iconclass 11P3 organization, functionaries and dignitaries in churches and in related institutions Iconclass
11P31 organization, functionaries and dignitaries in Roman Catholic church; clergy in general Iconclass
11P31131 insignia of bishop, e.g. mitre, crozier Iconclass
24A sun as celestial body Iconclass
31A234 squatting, crouching figure Iconclass
31A62 defecation Iconclass
31A623 faeces, excrement Iconclass
31A63 vomiting Iconclass
41C111 giving food Iconclass
44B113 king Iconclass
44B191 crown (symbol of sovereignty) Iconclass
44B192 sceptre, staff (symbol of sovereignty) Iconclass
44C3 politics Iconclass
44C312 political caricatures and satires Iconclass
45 warfare; military affairs Iconclass
45C211 uniform cap Iconclass
45D312 officer Iconclass
46A131 bourgeoisie, middle class, citizens, burghers Iconclass
46A7 crowd, mob Iconclass
52A4 Imagination; 'Imaginatione' (Ripa) Iconclass
52A44 Fantasy, Caprice; 'Capriccio' (Ripa) Iconclass
61B2 historical persons Iconclass
61B2(LEOPOLD II) historical person (LEOPOLD II) Iconclass
School / Style phantasy
satire (artistic device) AAT
social realism AAT
Henri Leys, Henri de Braekeleer, James Ensor / Loys Delteil. - Paris : Chez l'Auteur, 1925 (nr. 96)
James Ensor : Catalogue illustré de ses gravures ; Leur description critique et l'inventaire des plaques = Geïllustreerde catalogus van zijn gravures ; Hun kritische beschrijving en inventaris van de platen = Illustrated catalogue of his engravings ; Their critical description and inventary of the plates / Auguste Taevernier. - Ledeberg (Gent) : Erasmus Boekhandel bv Amsterdam, 1973 (nr. 80)
Belgische schone : Ensor tot Magritte ; Hoogtepunten uit de verzameling van het Museum voor Schone Kunsten Gent (tentoonstelling Laren, Singer Laren, 16.06 - 30.08.2015) / Johan De Smet, Jan Rudolph De Lorm. - Gent : Museum voor Schone Kunsten Gent, 2015 ; Laren : Singer Laren, 2015 ; Heule : Uitgeverij Snoeck, 2015 (cat. 15 (ill. p. 35))
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