CVAa in 2017

Discover the 2017 program of the Center for Flemish Architectural Archives (CVAa)! We focus on the cultural heritage of the building industry and continue our research into digital architectural archives. We bring international expertise on architecture's cultural heritage to Flanders and are active on international platforms. Finally, we will be preparing an important institutional shift in 2018, when the Architectuurarchief Provincie Antwerpen will be integrated in the Flanders Architecture Institute.

Building industry

We prepare a web dossier on archives of contractors and building companies, as a starting point for researchers, which will be launched in the autumn. As a test case we take on a non-inventoried archive of a building company, kept in the Architectuurarchief Provincie Antwerpen (APA), in order to learn about the specificities of building company archives and to make it available for research. And we contribute to a platform launched by ETWIE, meant to make companies aware of the importance of archives and help them in managing it.

From 8 September to 5 November 2017 an exhibition will be set up in the Antwerp Permeke Library - WERF! Foto's uit het Architectuurarchief - with photographs of construction sites in Antwerp, from the APA-collection. The exhibition will be part of the Festival of architecture, organized by our colleagues of the Flanders Architecture Institute. Professor Inge Bertels (VUB) will present her research on early construction photography in a lecture on 15 September 2017 (in Dutch). On Erfgoeddag (Heritage Day in Flanders and Brussels, 23 April 2017) CVAa and APA presented some documents from building company archives and provided guided tours in the APA-depot.

Digital born architectural archives

CVAa continues its research into digital archives. The archives @ the architects, a project of APA in which CVAa is an important partner, tries to find out how active architectural practices and archival institutes can work together and ameliorate the transfer of digital archives by a good preparation of the files. CVAa-archivarian Wim Lowet also focuses on the durable preservation of digital files which are now already part of the APA-collection.

Sharing our knowledge

The database '' is continuously updated with information and whereabouts of archives of architecture, urbanism, building and design in Flanders and Belgium and in April we present our experience with design archives during the Studiedag Historisch Interieur & Ontwerp (27 April 2017). CVAa remains available for all questions regarding archival care, transfers of archives, specific information about architects, urbanists, designers, buildings, collections and archives.


For many years, CVAa is an active member of the International Confederation of Architectural Museums (ICAM), for which CVAa-coordinator Sofie De Caigny as secretary general (from 2014) prepares the next conference in Copenhaguen (2018) with the executive committee. In December 2017, we organize an international conference on Léon Stynen, as a prelude to the Stynen Year in 2018


2017 is also institutionally an important year: we will be preparing the integration of the Architectuurarchief Provincie Antwerpen (APA) in the Flanders Architecture Institute, which will be official from 1 January 2018. This integration is challenging but will eventually lead to a stronger and more versatile architecture institute (with a collection).

More CVAa

Some recent CVAa-publications are