Louis-Charles Verwée 

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Biography of Louis-Charles Verwée  ( 1832-1882 )

Louis-Charles Verwée was born into a family of artists. His father, Louis-Pierre Verwée, was a famous landscapes and animals painter of the Romantic school, just as his brother Alfred-Jacques whose works are exhibited at the Royal Museums of Fine Arts in Belgium.

The young man was initiated naturally into painting with his father who will be his master for several years. However, the young artist showed talent for portraits and genre painting. He particularly likes the style of Alfred Stevens and Gustave Léonard De Jonghe, and managed to join in turns their studios.

He took part in numerous Salons, especially in Brussels in 1854 and in Antwerp in 1861, as well as in Ghent in 1871 and in Amsterdam in 1877. He mainly exhibited interior scenes with an anecdotal touch. He painted instants on the spot, just as this piece, which depicts a child rummaging about in a drawer, searching for some, buried treasure. This theme is recurrent in the artist’s work. He also likes to paint characters, mainly young women, busy in their everyday life.

As a gifted portraitist, he carried out wonderful portraits of women in a style quite similar to Stevens’, De Jonghe’s or Baugniet’s.  Within this classical school, he embodied the modern trend together with painter Charles Hermans. The artist was also renowned for his depictions of lower class’s characters, such as The knife sharpener and won over king Leopold II with Diplomacy, conserved in the royal collections

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