George Minne

(Gent 1866 - 1941 Sint-Martens-Latem)
The Flemish painter, draftsman and sculptor George Minne was born on 30 August 1866 in Gent in Belgium. While his early work is dominated by Gothic style, his main work focuses on sculptures characterized by mystical symbolism and pre-Raphaelism. Minne died on 20 February 1941 in Sint-Martens-Latem in Belgium.
Minne started studying architecture in 1880 with Jean Delvin at the Köninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten in Ghent. He then studied painting until 1886 with Théodore Channeel and sculpting with Louis van Biesbroek. In 1890 Minne first exhibited his works with the Belgian Symbolists of the artist group Les XX (Les Vingt), that was founded in 1884. Les XX included artists like James Ensor, Theo van Rijsselberghe, Fernand Khnopff, and Henry van de Velde. Minne himself became a member in 1891. After being denied as a scholar of Aguste Rodin („I have nothing to teach you“), he became a scholar of Charles van der Stappen at the Académie Saint-Luc de Gand in Brussels 1895–96. It was he, who pointed George Minne towards his true path: he started developing the sculpture of the Kneeling Youth. In 1889, together with other Belgian painters, Minne founded the artists' colony "Latemse School" in the village of Sint-Martens-Latem, which was strongly influenced by symbolism. From 1912 Minne lectured at the Köninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten in Ghent and after the outbreak of the First World War, fled with his wife to Wales. After the end of the war, he started teaching at the Academy of Ghent again. In 1930 Leo van Puyvelde wrote the first Catalogue raisonné with a monograph about George Minne. In 1931 the sculptor was ennobled. His work is shown in Essen in the Museum Folkwang in the permanent exhibition "La fontaine aux agenouillés" (Fountain with kneeling boys). The sculpture of the kneeling youth can also be found in the Neue Galerie in New York next to the painting of Adele Bloch-Bauer by Gustav Klimt.

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Relic bearer, 1897
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Mutter mit Kind


George Minne
George Minne and Viennese Modernism around 1900