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Illuminist Frans Smeers

Illuminist Frans Smeers
Frans Smeers (Brussels 1873 – 1960 Brussels) was first a decorator and then went to the Academy of Fine Arts in Bruges. He was co-founder of the Le Sillon group in 1893 together with J. Lambeaux and A. Bastien and drew many posters for the Salons of Le Sillon until 1900. The 'Sillonnists' responded to the contentless routine of neo-impressionism in Belgium and opted for a more realistic and somber style of painting. In 1895 he traveled to Paris with his friends.

From about 1900 he worked in a more illuministic, lighter style with genre paintings, portraits, landscapes, still lifes, beach scenes, harbors and marines. He worked mainly in the open air in clear, impressionistic strokes.

Around Nieuwpoort and Ostend, he painted beautiful beach and dune scenes, often with his wife and three daughters, bathed in a pearly light. Sometimes also using generous paint paste and a nervous brushstroke, a sunny color palette was created with a high horizon line, so that all attention was drawn to the scene in the foreground. He also made beautiful flower still lifes. Smeers' qualities can be recognized especially in his beach views with figures, including the gouache above this article, from his Children Playing on the Beach.

During the First World War he lived in London and the Netherlands. From 1933 to 1946 he was a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels. His works can be found in the Museum of Fine Arts, the Royal Museum of Fine Arts; Museum of Ixelles and art museum The Hague.
Smeers-Dag op het strand-Schevingen toen en nu
Smeers-Dag op het strand
Smeers-1915-strandpaviljoen-Scheepvaartmuseum
Smeers-1915-strandpaviljoen-Scheepvaartmuseum
smeers Zingende dame
Smeers-Zingende dame
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