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Richir Herman

Brussels 1866 – 1942

Belgian Painter

Nymph with Child Feeding Swallows

Signature: Attributed to Richir Herman
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: Image size 140 x 235 cm, frame size 145 x 240 cm

Richir Herman Jean Joseph was born in Ixelles (Brussels), on November 4, 1866. He was a Belgian painter of portraits, still lifes, genre paintings, nudes and landscapes. He made decorative paintings to fit into private homes.

Richir mainly painted portraits. His clients usually belonged to the higher circles. He portrayed amongst others King Albert and Queen Elisabeth, Cardinal Mercier and Countess d’Oultremont. Less known are the landscape paintings he made Limburg and Kempen, where he regularly stayed with befriended artist Emile Van Doren (1865 – 1949).

Herman Richir first studied at the Sint-Joost-ten-Node Academy with Gustave Biot and Charles Hermans, continued his education at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels (1884-1889) with the master teacher and artist Jean-Francois Portaels (1818 – 1895). In 1886, during his studies, he won second Prize of Rome for Painting.

Richir lived in Schaarbeek. In 1900 he became a teacher of drawing and in 1905 first teacher of painting after nature at the Brussels Academy. He was director there several times 1906-1907, 1910, 1911, 1915-1919, 1925-1927. He was retired in 1927.

His pupils included Albert Alleman (1892 – 1933), Éliane de Meuse (1899 – 1993), Paul Hagemans (1884 – 1959), Maurice Mareels (1893 – 1976), Guy Onkelinx (1879 – 1935), Georges Rogy (1897 – 1981), José Storie (1899 – 1961), Charles Swyncop (1895 – 1970), Maurice Schelck (1906 – 1978) and Max van Dyck (1902 – 1992).

He exhibited regularly at Brussels, Ghent, Antwerp, Ostend (Belgium) and several times at Paris Salon.

The painter died in Uccle (Brussels) on March 15, 1942. Today, Richir’s works can be found in numerous important private collections worldwide, as well as in the Antwerp Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels Museum of Ixelles, Brussels Charlier Museum, Brussels National Bank of Belgium (Portraits of King Albert I, Queen Elisabeth and of Governor Eugène Anspach, 1894), Schaerbeek Municipal collection (Le Bijou), Genk, Emile Van Doren Museum.

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