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Lumunist Emile Claus

Lumunist Emile Claus

Emile Claus (Sint-Eloois-Vijve 1849 – 1924 Astene) was The representative of Impressionism in Belgium. Between 1869 and 1874, he studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp under landscape painter Jacob Jacobs, among others. He then settled in Antwerp, where he primarily painted portraits and realistic, anecdotal genre pieces. In 1882, he achieved his first success with the painting "Hanengevecht in Vlaanderen," exhibited at the Paris Salon. In 1883, he moved to Astene with his wife Charlotte Dufaux, living in the villa "Zonneschijn" on the banks of the Leie. In the surroundings of his home, he created many works such as 'Soirée d’été.'

Under the influence of the French Impressionists, his style evolved from naturalism to Impressionism. The reason for this change can be found in his frequent visits to Paris, where Impressionism was popular. Emile Claus was also encouraged by his friend, the writer Camille Lemonnier.

He is considered the leader of Belgian Luminism; in 1904, he founded the group Vie et Lumière. He became known as the "painter of the sun" and the "painter of the Leie." His paintings "De bietenoogst" from 1890 and "De ijsvogels" from 1891 are important transitional works in this evolution.

Claus traveled extensively, including trips to the United States and Venice. During World War I, he lived in exile in London, where he frequently painted the Thames and the reflections of the city in the water. His paintings are spread worldwide, with many works found in Ghent and the Museum of Deinze and the Leie region. His grave was moved to the garden of his home by Charlotte because the muse Jenny continued to lay flowers on the grave.

In 2024, it will be 100 years since his death and 175 years since his birth. Therefore, the Belgian Luminist will be honored with the "Year of Light of Emile Claus," featuring various activities around the Leie and Deinze.

Vlas wieden

Soiree d'ete




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