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Issue 15 - Spring 2016

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Welcome to the Spring edition of our newsletter! After a short break we are back with updates on the N/P and Secondary Education Councils, details of new projects supported by the Community Fund and various updates on health and safety issues. Why not check out our regular column, "Love Laeken" and find out about what the Dreve Sainte Anne looked like before it became the busy street it is today!

On the services front, remember that the first enrolment phase for transport closes on 31 May 2016. Enrolments for extra-curricular activities will open on 1 June so keep checking the website for details of the activites. You should also have received details about the upcoming Performing Arts Day via email - for those of you who are wondering what Periscolaire involves, this is an excellent opportunity to come and see!

Finally, you should have received detils via email about this year's Somerfesto. The Somerfesto Committee has organised a wide range of exciting activities for kids of all ages to enjoy. Please volunteer to help make it the most successful school party ever! 

Comments? Questions? Contributions? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

What is the link between a sculpture in Laeken and Maserati cars?

You may have seen many times this sculpture of Neptune, close to the Chinese Pavilion and Japanese Tower, without taking any particular notice of it: but it is something quite special and beautiful which warrants a closer look.lovelaeken6

The sculpture and surrounding fountain is an exact replica of the original, located in Bologna, and which was commissioned in 1563 by Cardinal Carlo Borromeo (1538-1584) in honour of Pope Pius IV (pope from 1559-1565). Cardinal Borromeo was canonised a saint in 1610.A Flemish sculptor - Jean de Boulogne (1529-1608) also known as Giambologna - sculpted the original Neptune and the subsidiary figures. The surrounding fountain was designed by Tommaso Laureti. The work took three years to complete (1563-1565). Jean de Boulogne began his art studies in Antwerp but moved to Italy in 1550. Although greatly influenced by the work of Michelangelo (1475-1564) he developed his own mannerist style which emphasises “refined surfaces, cool elegance and beauty” (source: Wikipedia).

A member of the prestigious Academy of Art and Design, founded by Cosimo De Medici, Jean de Boulogne is considered to have been one of the most significant sculptors under the artistic patronage of the De Medici family in Florence. His sculpture in Bologna is justly described as “one of the masterpieces of the renaissance” (source: musee de l’eau et de la fontaine, Belgique). 

However, the story goes that Jean was disappointed not to have been chosen by the De Medici family to sculpt the Fountain of Neptune in Florence, which commemorates the marriage of Francesco De Medici. He therefore put extra effort into his design for the sculpture in Bologna, and won the commission.

Here is a picture of the sculpture and fountain in Bologna:

 

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At the base of the fountain are four water-nymphs – one at each corner. At Neptune’s feet are four cherubs who each hold a dolphin in their arms. The four winds are depicted on the plinth supporting the sculpture. The perfection, elegance and sheer beauty of Jean de Boulogne’s “mannerist” sculpture impressed King Leopold II, who saw it whilst on a visit to Bologna. He arranged for a mould to be taken of the original, from which an exact replica in bronze was cast by Giorgio Sangiorgi the eminent sculptor and art collector.

The replica was erected in the Royal Domain in Laeken in 1903. Maserati, the prestigious car manufacturer, was founded in Bologna in 1914. Since 1926 it has used a trident logo on its cars, which is based on Neptune’s trident from the sculpture.

Thus, there is a design-link between our sculpture in Laeken and Maserati cars!

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