An elegant and authoritative grid, Sven Augustijnen’s L’Histoire Belge is a shift of the artist’s filmic vocabulary towards simpler means of photography and text, as he attempts simultaneously to assert and to spoil the grand narrative of the history of Belgian rule in ten concise chapters. We confront two rows of five walnut framed paper panels, each juxtaposing two documentary photographs of artefacts with a droll caption. Their titles are less than revealing: A FINE ENSEMBLE, EMPRESS CHARLOTTE, CALUMNIOUS RUMOURS, INTERNECENE STRUGGLE, A MARRIAGE OF CONVENIENCE, THE ABDICATION, THE KINGS OF JERUZALEM, THE WHITE ROSES, THE UNITED STATES OF BELGIUM, and finally THE ROYAL CRYPTS – a name and a nod to the cryptic nature of historical information Augustijnen always deploys. However straightforward the photographs and the accounts – each detailing the machinations of Belgian royalty from the crusades to the just past – an air of unfinished business, unresolved rumors, innuendo, intrigue and other open questions contaminates the benign tone of orderly museumified truth. Executed in a year when the modern country of Belgium was, for the most part, without a government, this Belgian History offers the long view of what could be called the softest state of anarchy in Europe.