This archived website ‘James Ensor. An online museum.’ is temporarily not being updated. Certain functionality (e.g. specific searches in the collection) may no longer be available. News updates about James Ensor will appear on Questions about this website? Please contact us at

James Ensor in the Copenhagen Ordrupgaard museum

James Ensor. Master of the Mask

On 6 September 2013, the Copenhagen Ordrupgaard museum opens the exhibition, "James Ensor. Master of the Mask". This premier monographic Ensor exhibition in Denmark runs until 19 January 2014.

The exhibition sheds light on the underlying oppositions within the work of the Belgian artist.

As such, James Ensor is not only seen as a keen observer of Nature, but he is also a formidable master of the fantastic. In his work, in which light and death go effortlessly hand in hand, he is self-obsessed, yet also self-ironic. Ensor is simultaneously suffering redeemer and anarchist.

The grotesque masquerades that come to life in Ensor's paintings and his often cruel renderings of human disillusionment and vice were received for a long time with indignation and disgust. Only late in his life did James Ensor receive official recognition.

James Ensor, as he is seen, is an artist whose relevance has conquered the passage of time and whose influence on later generations and the international art scene, from Modernism to the present, is immense.

More information: