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Parking 58 sculpture moves to Zaventem airport

10:01 15/05/2024

A striking sculpture from a dismantled iconic building now has a new home. Brussels architect Jacques Moeschal’s arresting metal art work, which long graced the concrete walls of Parking 58 in the city centre, can now be seen at Brussels Zaventem airport.

Parking 58, well known for its amazing rooftop terrace, which was used before its final 2017 demolition as a pop-up summer bar, was knocked down to build Brucity, the City of Brussels’ new administrative centre. As a result, two of Moeschal’s pieces had to be dismantled – with one recently installed on the façade of Zaventem’s car park 3.

“Because of its size, we decided to assemble it there after a complete restoration,” Interparking chief executive Roland Cracco said. “The P3 car park has a vast facade and the work is very visible there. In 2023, around 22 million drivers passed through here.”

He said the long delay before the work was rehoused was because the P3 car park extension had be completed first. “In addition, the facade needed further reinforcement and its stability had to be checked.”

Cracco added that the sculpture was moved in close collaboration and approval from Moeschal’s family and heirs.

Moeschal (1913-2004) was born in Uccle and died in Auderghem. Honoured in a 2021 Bozar exhibition, he made a real mark on Brussels’ urban spaces.

Moeschal wanted to ensure that everyone could see his works in concrete or metal, normally stainless steel. He saw the motorway as his museum that motorists could drive through.

Two of Moeschal’s best known sculptures are the towering stainless steel ‘Sign of Light’ at Porte de Namur and the concrete and steel ‘Signal of Zellik’, located just 100 metres away from the Brussels regional border at Groot-Bijgaarden.

Moeschal, whose sculptures can be seen as far away as Mexico (for the Olympic Games) and the Negev desert in Israel, was most prolific in the Belgian capital.

Two must-see works include the metal ‘Nine Provinces’ on the former Parking 44 facade near Botanique metro and the concrete Cube which suits Auderghem’s Brutalist-style cultural centre perfectly.

Sadly, some of this talented artist’s works are gone. Moeschal’s graceful steel arrow designed for the Brussels World Fair of 1958 bit the dust in 1970. And in 2012, the charming fountain at Place de la Monnaie was taken down when the square was being renovated.

Photo: Interparking Brussels Airport

Written by Liz Newmark