Did you know that Agnès Varda is an honorary citizen of Brussels?


Filmmaker, photographer and visual artist Agnès Varda was born in Ixelles, a municipality of Brussels, on 30 May 1928. Already the recipient of numerous international awards, she received the César d'honneur in 2001 for her entire film career. 

In her autobiographical film "Les plages d'Agnès" (The Beaches of Agnes), released in 2008, the filmmaker retraced the course of her life to mark her 80th birthday, "Memories are like bubbles going up".  Arlette (the name her parents gave her because they had conceived her in Arles) thus rediscovered the house in which she was born in Ixelles. Justifying the title of her film, the artist revisited the beaches that have marked her life, starting with those of her childhood, namely Knokke-Heist and De Panne, on the Belgian North Sea coast. Then, in 1940, that of Sète, a town in the south of France where her parents had taken refuge, having fled Brussels following the advance of the German army.

Her hometown would remember her when, in 2012, the Ecole de Photographie of the City of Brussels was looking for a reference person in its field of activity for its new name. This person was Agnès Varda, a photographer by training and a video artist, known worldwide for her cinematographic career. She was therefore the perfect person to lend her name to the institute, which became the Ecole de Photographie et de Techniques visuelles Agnès Varda. This new name was inaugurated on 25 September 2013, in the presence of the Alderman for public education and Agnès Varda herself. The director also received the title of Honorary Citizen of the City of Brussels on this occasion.