Scientific research

The Chancellery conserves and manages the collection for The Phoebus Foundation. All collection pieces are preserved in the best possible circumstances and their material condition is constantly being monitored. The Phoebus Foundation has its own restoration studio, where its collection pieces are preserved and restored with the greatest care. Restoration campaigns often go hand in hand with scientific research.

This is how The Phoebus Foundation hopes to gain as much knowledge as possible regarding the objects in its possession and the broader cultural context in which these objects came to exist and function. To this end, the Foundation collaborates with local and international academics and researchers. Such collaborations result in small-scale exhibitions and/or publications, by means of which The Phoebus Foundation wishes to disclose the expertise resulting from its research activities as widely as possible.

Restorers at work in the studio.


Mad about Dimpna

Mad about Dimpna is a comprehensive research and restoration campaign, focusing on Goossen Van der Weyden’s ‘Dimpna altarpiece’. This monumental altarpiece is a key piece in the oeuvre of Goossen Van der Weyden, grandson of the famous Rogier. It was commissioned for the Norbertines’ Tongerlo Abbey, near Geel, where the cult of Saint Dimpna is still being honoured today.

Scenes from the Life of Saint Dimpna, c.1505

Restoration of one of the panels of Goossen Van der Weyden’s


Jacob Jordaens coming home

Jacob Jordaens: coming home is a research project on the monumental ensemble of ceiling paintings Jacob Jordaens made for his own home. In 1652, the Antwerp baroque artist adorned his magnificent home with a series of scenes from the story of Cupid and Psyche. These masterpieces now belong to The Phoebus Foundation collection. For the first time in their history, they are being subjected to thorough art historical research into the techniques and materials applied by Jordaens.

Cupid and Psyche (one of the ceiling paintings), c.1652

Jacob Jordaens

Latin American art

Conservation & Restoration

The complete collection of 20th century Latin American art is being studied in depth in the course of a comprehensive conservation project. These Latin American works are unique because of their authors’ complex use of materials and techniques. The research project intends to shed more light on the possibilities for conservation and restoration, which will enable The Phoebus Foundation to conserve and restore these masterpieces in ideal circumstances. This procedure also clarifies the artists’ methods and the historic circumstances in which these works were achieved.

Conservation of the complete cartography collection


Conservation of the complete collection

The complete collection of atlases, city views, topographic and chorographic prints is being restored ‘in house’. As this project involves a whole range of techniques, such as ‘vue d’optique’, engravings and lithographs, the study of this collection will contribute new insights into the history of cartography.

A restorer is framing an artwork