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Swans of Bruges

by Verbrugghe Charles

Bruges 1877 – Paris 1974

Bruges School

Dimensions: Image size 51 x 63 cm, frame size 65 x 77 cm
Signature: Signed middle right
Medium: Oil on panel

Value: up to 5.000€

Charles Verbrugghe was born in Bruges, Belgium on 15 June in 1877. He was born into Belgian aristocracy. He was the son of a shoemaker, but he preferred to become a painter.

Verbrugghe Charles was an impressionistic painter of still lifes, landscapes, town views, views of the sea and beaches, flowers and portraits.

Well known for painting the convents and city views of Bruges.

In 1907, he went to Paris to study under the master teacher Flori Van Acker. There, he became friends with the artist Utrillo and Kees Van Dongen. During that time, he lived in Montmartre near the Place du Tertre and painted the quaint corners of Paris. At the meeting point of the famous artists “Au Lapin Agile” he often came into contact with Degas, Renoir and Monet.

Every year he visited Bruges, a city he knew by heart. During his stay, he moved into the “Hotel Memling” either in the “Pension Notre-Dame”. In Bruges, they called him “De Brugse Parisien”. In 1968, there was a retrospective in Bruges in the “Galerie Brugeoise” with about a hundred of his works.

Verbrugghe utilized brilliant colors in his paintings and bathed his subjects in vibrant light. He was highly influenced by the French impressionists he met in Paris. He painted probably more than 4.000 canvases, especially landscapes and townscapes. As an autodidact he would build up a remarkable career. Initially he mainly focused on landscapes. Afterwards he was charmed by impressionism, a tendency that he would always remain faithful to, despite the pressure of the Parisian artistic world. He evolved from darker shades to more bright ones later on.

Verbrugghe died in Paris on 1 Octobre 1974 in the house of his son in Gorgeslez-Gonesse near Le Bourget.

Many of Verbrugghe’s works are not only to be found in Bruges. They are spread all over the world.


  1. MICHIELS, ‘De Brugse school’, Uitgaven West-Vlaamse Gidsenkring vzw, Brugge, 1989, p. 115-116.
  2. en G. PAS, ‘Biografisch lexicon plastische kunst in België’, Arto 2000, p. 536.
  3. PIRON, ‘De Belgische Beeldende Kunstenaars uit de 19de en 20ste eeuw’, Uitgeverij Art in Belgium, p. 1500.

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