Friday, October 3, 2014

Evariste Carpentier

Love is in the air
oil on canvas
73 x 92.5 cm
location unknown
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Evariste Carpentier (1845-1922) was a Belgian painter of genre scenes and animated landscapes. He liked to paint farm animals and, more generally, the charms of rural life.

He was born in a modest family of farmers in Kuurne. His strong artistic aptitude manifested itself at an early age while on the farm. He became a pupil at the Academy of Fine Arts of Courtrai in 1861. In 1864 he was admitted to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp. He proved to be gifted in painting from life, and achieved the prize of excellence in 1865, which allowed him to obtain a private studio in the Academy of Antwerp the following year.

In 1876, an old knee injury, caused in his youth, developed serious complications and threatened to require amputation. The pain prevented him from working. He left Antwerp to return to his hometown, where his sister provided him with care and treatment. Three years later, on the advice of his doctor, he left his hometown for the south of France to help speed his convalescence. Stopping on the way in Paris, he painted a series of studio genre pieces, which brought him immediate success, selling them to the wealthy Parisian middle-class.  In 1881, he was able to discard his crutches and establish his own studio near Montmartre.
In 1884 he moved to St-Pierre-le-Nemours near the Forest of Fontainebleau, and painted from morning till night in the open air. Returning to Belgium in 1886, he became key to the establishment of Impressionism in the country of his birth. By 1894 he emerged as one of the leaders of the Impressionist movement in Belgium.
In 1904 he was appointed director of the Fine Arts Academyin Liege.