Railings and stained-glass windows (1993)
The pre-metro station is decorated with balustrades and stained glass windows from la Maison du Peuple and l’Hôtel Aubecq respectively, which were both designed by Horta. The curves that are so typical of Victor Horta’s work are very striking here. The Maison du Peuple bruxelloise (House of the Brussels People) was opened in April 1899 and was mainly decorated in cast iron. In 1965 the Maison du Peuple was demolished, despite a general outcry. Unfortunately most of the dismantled building was lost. The Aubecq house along-side Avenue Louise experienced the same fate in 1950. Luckily much of Victor Horta’s architecture was preserved in the city. In Horta pre-metro station it lives on thanks to the integration of his Art Nouveau-style into the architecture of the station.
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VICTOR HORTA (1861 – 1947)
Victor Horta was the son of a master cobbler. At the age of twelve he already studied full-time at the Académie des Beaux-Arts (Fine Arts Academy) at the same time as his secondary schooling because his parents wanted him to manage a weaving workshop. It was only during a trip to Paris that he felt drawn to architecture. Over the following years he concentrated on design. As an apprentice with Alphons Balat, Victor Horta learnt the tricks of the trade, but he already had creativity. This was already obvious from the prizes that he won during his studies. As the pioneer of the Art Nouveau-movement in Belgium, he designed numerous luxurious buildings, many of which have sadly disappeared. Each one of his houses was designed with the people who would live in it in mind. The unique character of his houses meant that his architectural work was reserved for a well-to-do elite.