Louis Gallait

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Statue of Louis Gallait in Tournai Tournai - Louis Gallait.jpg
Statue of Louis Gallait in Tournai

Louis Gallait (9 or 10 May 1810 – 20 November 1887) was a Belgian painter. He lay at the basis of a revival of history painting in Belgium. He earned his reputation especially with the large painting of Charles V's abdication. Gallait's works were esteemed because of their realism, faithfulness of the costumes and color composition of his paintings. He was also a distinguished portrait painter.

Walloons French-speaking people who live in Belgium, principally in Wallonia

Walloons are a Romance ethnic group native to Belgium, principally its southern region of Wallonia, who speak French and Walloon. Walloons are a distinctive ethnic community within Belgium. Important historical and anthropological criteria bind Walloons to the French people.

History painting genre in painting defined by historical matter

History painting is a genre in painting defined by its subject matter rather than artistic style. History paintings usually depict a moment in a narrative story, rather than a specific and static subject, as in a portrait. The term is derived from the wider senses of the word historia in Latin and Italian, meaning "story" or "narrative", and essentially means "story painting". Most history paintings are not of scenes from history, especially paintings from before about 1850.

Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor 16th-century Holy Roman Emperor

Charles V was Holy Roman Emperor (1519–1556), King of Spain and ruler of the Spanish Empire, Archduke of Austria, and ruler of the Habsburg Netherlands (1506–1555). The Spanish conquest of Peru and Mexico, and the German colonisation of Venezuela both occurred during his reign. Charles V revitalized the medieval concept of the universal monarchy of Charlemagne and travelled from city to city, with no single fixed capital: overall he spent 28 years in the Habsburg Netherlands, 18 years in Spain and 9 years in Germany. After four decades of incessant warfare with the Kingdom of France, the Ottoman Empire, and the Protestants, Charles V abandoned his multi-kingdoms project with a series of abdications between 1554 and 1556 in favor of his son Philip II of Spain and brother Ferdinand I of Austria. The personal union of his European and American territories, spanning over nearly 4 million square kilometres, was the first collection of realms to be defined as "the empire on which the sun never sets".

Contents

Biography

Art and Liberty (1849) Louis Gallait 005.jpg
Art and Liberty (1849)

Gallait was born in Tournai, Hainaut, Belgium in 1810. He first studied in his native town under Philippe Auguste Hennequin. In 1832 his first picture, Tribute to Caesar, won a prize at the Salon of Ghent. He then went to Antwerp to continue his studies under Mathieu Ignace van Brée, and in the following year exhibited at the Brussels Salon Christ Healing the Blind. This picture was purchased by subscription and placed in the Tournai Cathedral. Gallait next went to Paris, and he sent to the Belgian Salons Job on the Dunghill, Montaigne Visiting Tasso in Prison, and — to the Brussels Gallery in 1841 — The Abdication of Charles V. The latter painting, which had been commissioned by the Belgian government, was hailed as a triumph and gained him a European reputation. The painting was exhibited together with a painting entitled the Compromise of Nobles by another young Belgian painter, Edouard de Bièfve. Both paintings subsequently travelled to exhibitions in many cities in Europe, and enjoyed a particularly enthusiast reception in Germany where they formed an important impetus for the development of a German school of history painting. [1] Official invitations induced him to settle at Brussels.

Tournai Municipality in French Community, Belgium

Tournai, known in Dutch as Doornik and historically as Dornick in English, is a Walloon municipality of Belgium, 85 kilometres southwest of Brussels on the river Scheldt. In the province of Hainaut, Tournai is part of Eurometropolis Lille–Kortrijk–Tournai, which had 2,155,161 residents in 2008.

Ghent Municipality in Flemish Community, Belgium

Ghent is a city and a municipality in the Flemish Region of Belgium. It is the capital and largest city of the East Flanders province, and the second largest municipality in Belgium, after Antwerp. The city originally started as a settlement at the confluence of the Rivers Scheldt and Leie and in the Late Middle Ages became one of the largest and richest cities of northern Europe, with some 50,000 people in 1300. It is a port and university city.

Antwerp Municipality in Flemish Community, Belgium

Antwerp is a city in Belgium, and is the capital of Antwerp province in Flanders. With a population of 520,504, it is the most populous city proper in Belgium, and with 1,200,000 the second largest metropolitan region after Brussels.

Gypsy woman with two children (1852) SA 2112-Een zigeunerin met twee kinderen-"Eene rustende heidin met twee kinderen".jpg
Gypsy woman with two children (1852)

Among his accomplished works may be named The Last Honors paid to Counts Egmont and Horn by the Corporations of the Town of Brussels, now at Tournai; The Death of Egmont, in the Berlin gallery; the Coronation of Baudouin, Emperor of Constantinople, painted for Versailles; The Temptation of St Anthony, in the palace at Brussels; The Siege of Antioch, Art and Liberty, Portrait of M. B. Dumortier and The Plague at Tournay, all in the Brussels gallery. A Gipsy Woman and her Children was painted in 1852. He also served as the director and president of the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts.

Palace of Versailles French palace on the outskirts of Paris

The Palace of Versailles was the principal royal residence of France from 1682, under Louis XIV, until the start of the French Revolution in 1789, under Louis XVI. It is located in the department of Yvelines, in the region of Île-de-France, about 20 kilometres southwest of the centre of Paris.

Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts art school in Brussels, Belgium

The Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts - École supérieure des Arts de la Ville de Bruxelles (ARBA-ESA), in Dutch Koninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten van Brussel, is the Belgian art school, established in Brussels in the Kingdom of Belgium. It was founded in 1711. At the beginning housed in a single room in the city hall, in 1876 the school moved to a former convent and orphanage in the Rue du Midi, rehabilitated by the architect Pierre-Victor Jamaer, where the school still operates.

"M. Gallait has all the gifts that may be acquired by work, taste, judgment and determination," wrote Théophile Gautier. His art is that of a man of tact, a skilled painter, happy in his dramatic treatment but superficial. No doubt, this Walloon artist, following the example of the Flemings of the Renaissance and the treatment of Belgian classical painters and the French Romantic school, sincerely aimed at truth. Unfortunately, misled by contemporary taste, he could not conceive of it other than as dressed in sentimentality. As an artist employed by the State, he exercised considerable influence, and for a long time he was the leader of public taste in Brussels.

Théophile Gautier French writer

Pierre Jules Théophile Gautier was a French poet, dramatist, novelist, journalist, and art and literary critic.

Wallonia Region of Belgium

Wallonia is a region of Belgium. As the southern portion of the country, Wallonia is primarily French-speaking, and accounts for 55% of Belgium's territory and a third of its population. The Walloon Region was not merged with the French Community of Belgium, which is the political entity responsible for matters related mainly to culture and education, because the French Community of Belgium encompasses both Wallonia and the majority French-Speaking Brussels-Capital Region.

Renaissance European cultural period, 14th to 17th century

The Renaissance is a period in European history, covering the span between the 14th and 17th centuries and marking the transition from the Middle Ages to modernity. The traditional view focuses more on the early modern aspects of the Renaissance and argues that it was a break from the past, but many historians today focus more on its medieval aspects and argue that it was an extension of the middle ages.

In 1849 he became correspondent of the Royal Institute of the Netherlands, and the next year he became associated member. [2]

Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences Society of scientists and institute

The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences is an organization dedicated to the advancement of science and literature in the Netherlands. The academy is housed in the Trippenhuis in Amsterdam.

Notable students include Cesare Dell'Acqua. Gallait died in Brussels in 1887.

Cesare DellAcqua Italian painter

Cesare dell' Acqua was an Italian painter known for historical works.

Brussels Capital region of Belgium

Brussels, officially the Brussels-Capital Region, is a region of Belgium comprising 19 municipalities, including the City of Brussels, which is the capital of Belgium. The Brussels-Capital Region is located in the central portion of the country and is a part of both the French Community of Belgium and the Flemish Community, but is separate from the Flemish Region and the Walloon Region. Brussels is the most densely populated and the richest region in Belgium in terms of GDP per capita. It covers 161 km2 (62 sq mi), a relatively small area compared to the two other regions, and has a population of 1.2 million. The metropolitan area of Brussels counts over 2.1 million people, which makes it the largest in Belgium. It is also part of a large conurbation extending towards Ghent, Antwerp, Leuven and Walloon Brabant, home to over 5 million people.

Honours

Notes

  1. John R. Hinde, Jacob Burckhardt and the Crisis of Modernity, McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP, 28 Jun, 2000, p. 249
  2. "L. Gallait (1810 - 1887)". Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
  3. Handelsblad (Het) 15-05-1881

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