Since 1975 the International Carnival and Mask Museum has been located in Binche, a medieval town with a traditional carnival, listed in 2003 by UNESCO as intangible cultural heritage. The museum highlights this tradition, and the history of the famous Gilles de Binche, as well as taking you on a captivating journey to festivals around the world. Its collection consists of more than 12,000 masks, costumes and accessories.
The exhibition shows the different facets of the mask, from its use for theatre and rites, to the different shapes and materials from the Middle Ages until today. It tells universal stories from all over the world: from the European winter festivals to the masked ceremonies in North and Latin America to the mysterious customs of Africa and the fascinating traditions in Asia and Oceania. Temporary exhibitions explore certain themes in the collection, and the museum has established a pedagogical space for young visitors.