Universeum is a European network, established in the year 2000, concerned with academic heritage in its broadest sense, both tangible and intangible. It aims at the preservation, study, access and promotion of university collections, museums, archives, libraries, botanical gardens, astronomical observatories, etc. It is open to heritage and museum professionals, researchers, students, university administrators and all those involved in university heritage.
View the offical website of Universeum Network
The Université Libre de Bruxelles founded in 1834 is one of the biggest universities in the French speaking part of Belgium. The University is spread across 8 campuses and locations in Brussels and Wallonia, and the twelve faculties cover all the disciplines, closely combining academic input and research.
Based on the principle of free enquiry which postulates independent reasoning and the rejection of all dogma, the University has retained its original ideals as a free institution that is firmly engaged in the defense of democratic and human values.
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THE ULB MUSEUMS NETWORK
The ULB Museums Network, created in 2003, is made up of more than ten museums and collections of the university, located on four campuses in Brussels and two sites in Wallonia.
During the conference, tours will be organized in several university museums and collections located on the Solbosch campus:
The Allende Room (ULB’s contemporary art collection)
The Allende Room has been, since 1979, the main exhibition room at the ULB. The programming illustrates the university’s missions and values, by raising societal issues, through the work of contemporary artists, by offering visibility to the faculties, by organizing pedagogical exhibitions, and last but not least, by designing exhibitions, contributing to the promotion of cultural dialogue. The contemporary art collection of the ULB is also displayed from time to time in that room.
The ULB cast collection created in 1931 comprised some 160 works of art from Antiquity till the 19th C. illustrating the major sculptures any art historian should know. Unfortunately this rich collection has suffered during the war and the following years when it was scattered around the university. Some 60 pieces have been saved, restored and published; they are now all exhibited in one main room.
Museum of Mineralogy
The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences (DSTE) exhibits mineralogical and lithological items in display cases classified according to the Dana/Strunz official mineralogical classification, based on mineral species’ crystal-chemistry. Some display cases show items ranging from the Democratic Republic of Congo (copper, cobalt), minerals from Belgium, the collection of donor mineralogists and precious stones.
Museum of Zoology and Anthropology
The museum is a tool intended for teachers, students, researchers and naturalists. Since its creation in the 19th century, many specimens have been added to its collections, representing all of today’s zoological groups. All items follow a central thread: the evolution of animal species (including the human species), and the organisms’ particular adaptation.
About the city
Brussels is both the capital of Belgium and of Europe. The city is bilingual (one speaks both French and Dutch). The population counts some 1 200 000 inhabitants. Brussels plays a leading role as the political centre of Europe and hosts many international organizations. Open to the world, Brussels is home to a multitude of European summits and conferences. With 2,000 international associations’ headquarters, and close to 42 international organizations, its international influence is considerable. Its central position is also home to a large number of foreign nationals. The Belgian capital is a cosmopolitan city, in constant evolution. A city of variety and contrast, its region covering an area of 162 km2 and 19 municipalities.
It is a dynamic city investing a lot in the research and innovation sectors. The atmosphere in the heart of the city, on the streets, is a continuous balance between local culture (traditional markets, folklore…) and modernity.
About KU Leuven and its collections
KU Leuven will celebrate its 600th anniversary in 2025, making it one of Europe’s oldest universities. KU Leuven boasts fourteen campuses, and now has 50,000 students, spread across the various campuses in Leuven and elsewhere in Flanders. KU Leuven ranks among the best 50 universities worldwide, and stands firm as the most innovative university in Europe.
Over time, KU Leuven has become a cosmopolitan institution in a rapidly changing urban environment. Its unique profile promotes cutting-edge science and also a quality of life and openness to talent. KU Leuven brings its knowledge and expertise in research to the public debate. As such, the University plays an important role in the advancement of society, and intends to participate in contemporary issues.
Today, KU Leuven has an extensive and dispersed collection of scientific and artistic heritage. The best known are the ancient legacies of the noble families of Arenberg and Spoelberch, with paintings, textiles, silver, porcelain and furniture. In addition, there are many collections of former university property and academic (artistic) heritage, such as a gallery of academic portraits and a collection of Congolese art, originally a didactic collection for educational and research purposes.
More about KU Leuven and its collections :
About the city
Rich in historical heritage, the city of Leuven is famous for its Gothic town hall.
You can also discover masterpieces in the various neighboring abbeys, churches and museums.
From a cultural and touristic point of view, Leuven has many sites such as the “Great Beguinage”, where you can walk and discover traditional houses or Park Abbey to enjoy its wonderful landscape, its natural setting and its ponds.
GHENT & MONS
Ghent University was founded in 1817. Since then, it has always been one of the major universities in Belgium and a centre for excellence in higher education. In addition to this leading position at the national level, it ranks among the top 100 of universities according to internal rankings. It is also a cosmopolitan institution due its numerous english programs and its proximity to major cities, such as Brussels, Antwerp and Rotterdam.
The GUM (Ghent University Museum) of the Ghent University will open on March 21st. This forum for science, doubt and art is located in the Botanical Garden of the university. GUM website
The University of Mons, abbreviated to “UMONS”, was created in 2009 following the merging of several faculties, the oldest one founded in 1837. UMONS is a human-scale and a cosmopolitan university, located at the centre of Europe, at approximately an hour by car from Brussels and Lille, and close to the French border.
The MUMONS, the new museum of the University of Mons will be inaugurated at the end of 2020. It is located in the ancient Chapel of the Visitandines founded in 1717. It will gather all the cultural activities that were until then spread around the city.