Getting to know the figure of Le Mayeur, a Belgian painter who loves Bali to death – The arrival of foreign tourists to the island of Bali often raises interesting stories. One of them is the story of a Belgian painter whose full name is Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur. This artist is famous for having a great love for the Land of Bali. As proof, the house that he once lived in has now become a cultural arts museum, known as the Le Mayeur Museum.
The Le Mayeur Museum, located in the Sanur area, is now a popular destination in Bali. There, you can find a row of high art works that became the creation of Le Mayeur. While visiting this museum, you can also learn about the interesting life of Le Mayeur. Moreover, he has a romantic and interesting love story with a woman from Bali known as Ni Pollok.


Le Mayeur’s First Arrival to the Island of Bali

Le Mayeur has the full name Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur de Merpres is a man from Brussels, Belgium who was born on February 9, 1880. His last days were spent in the City of Ixelles, and breathed his last on May 31, 1958. However, Le Mayeur had time very long time in Bali. Le Mayeur set foot in Bali for the first time in Singaraja City in 1932.

At the moment of the first time to Bali, Le Mayeur has shown his love. Not only because of the high art culture in Bali. However, cultural traditions that are well preserved also make Le Mayeur very comfortable in Bali. He also often spends his time relaxing and enjoying the natural beauty of Bali. At the same time, Le Mayeur also likes traditional dances and Balinese traditions when praying to temples.

Settle in Bali and Meet Ni Pollok in Denpasar

The arrival to Bali and the warm welcome from the local community, made Le Mayeur feel comfortable. Therefore, he then rented a house in Banjar Kelandis in Denpasar. Unexpectedly, his decision to stay in Denpsar was the beginning of his meeting with Ni Pollok. At that time, Ni Pollok was 15 years old, and was known as a talented young legong dancer.

The two met frequently because Le Mayeur used Ni Pollok as a model for his paintings. Not only one, several paintings with the model of Ni Pollok were created by Le Mayeur during the years 1932 to 1933. These paintings were then brought to an exhibition in Singapore. Unexpectedly, Le Mayeur’s painting with Ni Pollok’s model, turned out to be enthusiastically received by art lovers in Singapore.

Due to the success of the exhibition, Le Mayeur then chose to buy a house located in Sanur. There, he often called Ni Pollok along with his two friends to be models. Initially, he planned to only stay for 8 months in Bali. However, a meeting with Ni Pollok, made the plan completely change. Instead of going home after staying 8 months, Le Mayeur spent his old age in Bali until the end of his life.

Ni Pollok, who initially only acted as a painting model, had a special relationship with Le Mayeur. The two of them officially became husband and wife. The two of them lived in harmony through various difficult times, including during World War II and the war in an effort to defend Indonesia’s independence. Until finally, in 1957, Le Mayeur was forced to return to Belgium, because of cancer.

The Form of Le Mayeur’s High Love for Bali

Two months after returning to Belgium, Le Mayeur died, on May 31, 1958 to be exact. His various assets in Bali were then given in full to Ni Pollok. In his last days, Le Mayeur was faithfully accompanied by Ni Pollok. After returning from Belgium, Ni Pollok then lived in the house occupied by Le Mayeur in Bali until he died on July 18, 1985 at the age of 68 years.

After Le Mayeur’s death, the house that is a memory of his life is still well preserved. The interior of the room is also still maintained as original. Moreover, Ni Pollok has officially given the assets of the house to the government to be used as a museum. Inside this building, there are a total of about 80 paintings by Le Mayeur.

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