Pieter Faes Biography


Flemish Baroque Painter

Pieter Faes was born in 1750 in Meir, near Hoogstraten, north of Antwerp. He was trained at the Academy of Antwerp. In 1791 he became a deacon of the Guild of St Luke. Dated works are known from 1779 until 1796. Works which he painted for the Royal castle of Laeken between 1782 - 1784 were brought to Vienna at the command of Maria Christina. Pieter Faes died in Antwerp in 1814.
The work of Pieter Faes is represented in many museums including the Groeninge Museum, Bruges, the Musee Royale des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge,and the Metropolitan Museum, New York, and the Museum Taxandria,Turnhout.
Pieter Faes, together with Jan Frans van Dael, Jan Frans Eliaerts and a few other Flemish painters of the period, worked in the tradition of Gerard van Spaendonck, a development on which Jan van Huysum put his mark. But his brush stroke is relatively broad and the small and thinstrokes in different but related hues over each other reminds one of watercolours. There is a moderate use of green leaves, and some species spread upward from a cluster of rather densely packed flowers.
Tulips are often at the top. Popular in the eighteenth century, particularly in Flanders and Paris, where the so-called 'Bizardes' - big global flowers with red or violet shades on a yellow ground and with long stalks, and the 'Baguettes' - similar but with a white ground. Popular also were the Auricula and the Cabbage Rose. And fashionable were double flowers of all kinds, here opium poppy, peonies, larkspurs, hollyhocks and hyacinths. Double hyacinths were grown in many variations and were the most popular flowers of the eighteenth century. High prices, up to more than two thousand guilders for a single bulb, were fetched for particular types. A native grass and a bird's nest with eggs or young birds are often seen in flowerpieces by Faes.
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