James Ensor

L'Entree du Christ a Bruxelles [The Entry of Christ into Brussels]

About this artwork

This etching is based on Ensor’s vast 1888 painting of the same subject. It shows the annual carnival in Brussels where a tiny figure of Christ on a donkey is swamped by a bulging mass of protestors with banners, carnival masks, and wearing contemporary dress. It is a modern reworking of the story of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem. Ensor was an atheist, but he used Christian motifs to express his contempt for what he saw as an increasingly inhumane world of political and social injustice. A number of the figures in the crowd are recognisable and include some of his friends and members of his family. The figure of Christ is a partial self-portrait; Ensor identified with Jesus as a victim of mockery, and a symbol of the poor and oppressed.

see media
  • title:
    L'Entree du Christ a Bruxelles [The Entry of Christ into Brussels]
  • accession number:
    GMA 2285
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • glossary:
  • materials:
    Etching on paper
  • date created:
    1896
  • measurements:
    Image size: 24.80 x 35.60 cm; paper size: 35.00 x 47.20 cm
  • credit line:
    Purchased 1981
  • copyright:
    © DACS 2018.

James Ensor

James Ensor