Home......World......Europe.....Benelux......Belgian Mural......E-mail



The NATIONAL BASILICA of KOEKELBERG... King Leopold II wanted to build a Neo Gothic church in 1905. However, World War I kind of got in the way. By the time the war ended in 1919 and the basicila was started, Neo Gothic was out and Art Deco was in. And this Art Deco basilica, built to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Belgian independence, is the fifth largest church in the world. It's 89 meters high and 167 meters long.

It was build by donations from the faithful. Some of them may have thought it would take another 75 years to complete. It wasn't finished until 1971!

As a part of the 50th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome that established the European Union, the Basilica hosted an exhibition on Leonardo da Vinci. For me, the highlight of the show was the collection of models created from Leondardo's sketches. What an increible mind and talent for people to still talk about him 500 years after he died!


a view from inside the Basilica  
the European Genius
Copyright 2008 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.