What’s on: The unknown women painters of the Italian Baroque


See a side of the Baroque you never knew existed in Ghent, nosh across Flanders during Week van de smaak or take to the Zavel in Brussels for twinkly lights and a little jazz

The Ladies of the Baroque

It’s not hard to name painters of the Baroque period. Rubens, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Vermeer. Now name a woman. The fact that most people assume there weren’t any was reason enough for the Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent to devote an exhibition to the subject.

Fifty paintings introduce visitors to names of Italian painters of the 16th and 17th centuries that should be common. Artemisia Gentileschi is arguably the most famous woman artist of the Italian Baroque and figures prominently in The Ladies of the Baroque. Her work is compared with her female contemporaries and placed in context in an art world completely dominated by men. Until 20 January, MSKGent, Fernand Scribedreef 1, Ghent

Week van de smaak

The final days of the annual foodie fest Week van de smaak (The Week of Taste) have loads of events to offer. The theme this year is healthy eating, so you’ll find the Healthy African Kitchen of Togo on offer in Malle and a Healthy Breakfast on offer in Ghent’s Groentenmarkt. Head to Leuven’s kringwinkel to sample the Somalian street food bajiya or to Antwerp to see famed food photographer Tony Le Duc’s gorgeous exhibition Cokeryen, inspired by 17th-century still lifes. Until 25 November, across Flanders

Nocturnes van de Zavel

Just as the lights, stalls and general merriment of Winter Wonders cranks up in the centre of Brussels, De Nocturnes van de Zavel descends on the most picturesque of squares. It’s a sort of grown-up’s holiday market, with more emphasis on cocktails and jazz than Ferris wheels and trinkets. There’s live music and plenty of lights, plus Art on Trees, which sees decorated trees in the surrounding streets, each one in the hands of one of the area’s merchants. Some stalls selling select products and a bit of performance throughout the day and evenings brings the whole winter atmosphere home. 29 November to 2 December, Grote Zavel

Photo: Artemisia Gentileschi’s ‘Judith and Her Maid’ (detail), ca 1613 (©Gallerie degli Uffizi, Firenze)