SIMONIS, Eugène
(b. 1810, Liège, d. 1882, Bruxelles)

Biography

Belgian sculptor. He started his career at the Liège École de Dessin between 1825 and about 1826, when he was taught by François-Joseph Dewandre (1758-1835). Receiving a grant to continue his studies, he went to live in Rome (1828-35), where he was a pupil of Mathieu Kessels and Carlo Finelli. The influence of their mildly Neo-classical style is evident in his early works. After his return to Brussels he exhibited Innocence, depicting a young girl playing with a viper (marble, 1839; Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts, Brussels).

He made a second journey to Italy in 1840 and exhibited in Brussels in 1842 and in Paris in 1843. This was followed by several official commissions. Simonis's work was technically accomplished and possessed a straightforward charm.