George Minne, an introduction

" ... small sculptures, monumentally big, closed, overflowing with ripe emotion, from inner suffering, from calm consideration-fixed in their simplification of form and full of rich divisions of surface. The nature is simplified as it were and the human body appears protracted and erected in awkward gestures. Yet, what an exceptional rhythm of surfaces and lines-also in the contorted renderings of the body, how this carries out the expression to a high power. Because Minne in no way seeks the "beautiful" line, the balancing equilibrium, the classic beauty and the comfortable admiration. There lies a wonderful, difficult to explain power in the sculptures of Minne-in the kneeling, the left and right stiff bowing figures..." With these words Karel van de Woestijne typified the work of George Minne (1866-1941), undoubtedly one of the most well-known symbolist sculptors in Europe. His modern spirituality, situated on the medieval mythic of Jan van Ruusbroec (1293/94-1381), fit in well with the attempts of the contemporary avant-garde towards what moved the soul. Many admirers in the time see in the stylised art of Minne also a revival of the Gothic. Continue reading on this page.

The Holy Women at the Tomb - 1896

The Holy Women at the Tomb

Groeninge Museum Bruges
Fountain with Kneeling Youths - 1898

Fountain with Kneeling Youths

Museum of Fine Arts Ghent
Small Figure Kneeling - 1896

Small Figure Kneeling

Museum of Deinze and the Leie Region
Memorial for Georges Rodenbach - 1899

Memorial for Georges Rodenbach

Works of Art in the Public Domain
Queen Astrid Memorial

Queen Astrid Memorial

Works of Art in the Public Domain
George Minne, Pièta, Museum of Fine Arts Ghent


During the war years that Minne spent in Wales as an exile, an extended series of completed sketches emerges, primarily in charcoal on paper. The drawings vary in size, from small format to monumental drawings, up to...
Sketchbook ca. 1898

Sketchbook ca. 1898

The drawings in this sketchbook are often quite realistic studies with naked youths, drawn after a live model. Other, more sketch-like studies are clearly associated with the Fountain with Kneeling Youths. Here, however...