100. Eugeen van Mieghem
Eugeen van Mieghem
Raccommodeuse de Sacs (Journée Ensoleillée)
Signed lower right
Oil on paper laid down on board, 49.6 x 58.9 cm
– Auction Campo, Antwerp, 28 April 2009, lot 271
– Private collection, the Netherlands
As “the artist of people,” the Antwerp-born artist Eugeen van Mieghem captured the toiling men and women, the shabby emigrants, the prostitutes, the vagrants, and other street figures in hundreds of drawings, prints, and paintings.
Van Mieghem had his first taste of real success at La Libre Esthétique in Brussels, where his pastels and drawings hung alongside works by French impressionists such as Claude Monet, Paul Cézanne, Camille Pissarro, Renoir, and Édouard Vuillard. Women were always important subjects in his work: first, his mother, and later in his career, his wife Augustine Pautre in particular. But the leading figure in his entire oeuvre is the working woman in the port of Antwerp. Like his great role model, Jean-François Millet, Van Mieghem gave these simple folk women respect and dignity. Millet painted them working in the countryside; Van Mieghem portrayed them in their daily environment in the port of Antwerp. In his oeuvre the influence of Rembrandt, Steinlen, and Edvard Munch is clearly recognisable.
* Condition report available upon request