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Fons Van Wanzeele

(1913-2008)

Fons Van Wanzeele was born on June 8, 1913 in Ninove and passed away on April 3, 2008 at the age of 94. Like his father Jules Van Wanzeele he wanted to become an art painter. After high school, he went to study at the Higher Institute of Art Education and the Higher Institute of Pedagogy in Gent. From 1939 onwards, he taught art at the Royal Atheneum of Maaseik, Antwerp and eventually Kapellen.

Fons was an appreciated artist. He used various techniques and lots of different materials, such as canvas,paper, stone, glass… In his work, he dealt with the big questions of life and expressed a strong committment to the suffering of others. He painted a series “de Oorlogsjaren” (the war years), 3 different Roads to Calvary and a series about Alzheimer.

In 1976 Fons created a ‘Road to Calvary’ for a church in Aynate, a small village of Saurat-en-Ariège in the French Pyrenees. What is special about it, is that it is made on a slate, a material that is typical of the area. This technique required a lot of skill, and did not allow any mistakes. In the video of 2006, Jan Van Wanzeele, son of Fons, acts as a guide for his nephew Eric Van Wanzeele.

Aynat, Saurat (Tarascon s/Ariège, France)

Calvary in slate by Fons Van Wanzeele in Aynat (French Pyrenees).

This video was made in 2006. It’s the last recording of Fons working. Pen and paper, that was all Fons needed to be an artist.

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