The Only Artifact On The Moon Is Belgian


What not many people know is that Belgian artist Paul Van Hoeydonck is the only artist in the world who has a work of art on the moon. The statuette fallen astronaut went with the Apollo 15 to the moon in 1971 and it is still there in the exact position that David Scott, the commander of the mission had put it in.

Picture Courtesy Of NASA 

The "Fallen Astronaut" came on the moon because the crew of the American Apollo 15 space mission wanted to make a personal gesture in honor of the American astronauts and Soviet cosmonauts who had given their lives for the development of space exploration. The then three recently killed cosmonauts of the Soviet mission Soyuz 11 reinforced this desire.

David Scott met Paul Van Hoeydonck at a food festival. Scott knew that Van Hoeydonck used the theme of space travel in his art and discussed the idea of a statue with him. This led to the agreement that Paul Van Hoeydonck would make a statue to place on the moon.

Van Hoeydonck received a number of design guidelines from David Scott. The statue had to be light and sturdy and be able to withstand the extreme temperature differences on the moon. The figurine also had to be gender-less nor appear to belong to a particular ethnic group. Because David Scott did not want to commercialize the space, the name of Paul Van Hoeydonck would not be made public.

Picture Courtesy Of NASA

On 2 August 1971, David Scott placed a memorial plaque on the moon at the end of the last space walk of the Apollo 15 mission. This contains the fourteen names of all the then known perished astronauts and cosmonauts. Scott placed the "Fallen Astronaut" statuette next to it in a fallen state.

The Saint Peters church of Bazel


The historic center of the small town of Bazel has the 14th century Saint Peter's church as its landmark. This church, like so many other churches in Belgium, has had a turbulent building history. The oldest parts are from the 14th century. There was a prayer house on this spot that had the status of a parish church. In 964 this parish church was replaced by a Romanesque church and in 1364 by a Gothic church.

Picture by Harry Fabel
The old northern side aisle was rebuilt in 1666, the southern one in 1699. In 1714 the church received a new sacristy. After the fire of 1879, the choir was thoroughly restored and the lower church expanded to the design of architect P. Van Kerkhove.

Picture by Harry Fabel
The church has a number of sculptures, created by two famous sculptors from Temse: Adriaan and Filip Nijs. From their hand include the pulpit, a confessional and the statues of St. Peter, St. Joseph and a crucifix from the 18th century. Further in the church there is a classical paneling and neo-gothic altars and choir stalls. Tombs of the Vilain XIIII family hang against the outside wall of the winter chapel.

Picture by Harry Fabel

The church was protected as a monument in 1974. You can find it at this address: Kon. Astridplein 29, bazel-kruibeke.

The Castle of De Maurissens in Pellenberg


The De Maurissens family was a noble family whose roots lie in Switzerland. The family was part of the Belgian, and until 1883 of the Dutch nobility. In 1883 the Dutch branch formally died out with the death of Johanna Theresia de Maurissens (1801-1883). Her two brothers, Eduardus Godfridus and Alexander, had offspring, but they chose the Belgian nationality in 1839 and therefore belonged to the Belgian nobility.


Picture by Harry Fabel

On August 16, 1914, at the beginning of the First World War, the castle was burned down. In 1916 Edouard had the current castle designed by the architect Chr├ętien Veraart. After his death, his widow Irma L.M.T. Maurissens-van Eijll live in the family domain until her death in 1948.

Picture by Harry Fabel

In 1949 the castle and its park were sold by their 7 children to the Catholic University of Leuven, initially to serve as a sanatorium. The castle is now a training center of the Lucina Academy.

Picture by Harry Fabel

You can find the castle and its public park at this address: Weligerveld, Lubbeek.