Corneille Biography

Born Guillaume Cornelis van Beverloo to Dutch parents on July 3, 1922, in Liège, Belgium, Corneille was influenced by Miró, Picasso and Paul Klee but claimed the most profound connection to van Gogh because of their shared passion for color, form and nature Belgian-born Dutch master painter, printmaker, ceramicist and writer.

The Artist initially trained in drawing at the Amsterdam Rijksakademie (1940 to 1943 ), but is considered a self-trained painter.

While at the academy he became a close friend of Karel Appel and co-founded the COBRA GROUP of artists, with Appel, Alechinksy, Jorn y Dubuffet, in 1948.

His early work was naturalistic, but after being inspired by the joie de vivre of French painters, and in particular by the work of younger artists such as Edouard Pignon, he slowly moved into the Cubist style. The poetic Corneille was strongly influenced by Miro and Klee. After the group dissolved in 1951 he moved to Paris and began collecting African art. These primitive artifacts became evident in his works, which began to take on a more imaginative style, like landscapes seen from a bird's eye view, exotic birds and stylised forms. Today Corneille lives and works in Paris, he makes visits to Israel where he works with the Jaffa Atalier. On 24 in September 2003 there was an opening of his exhibition of prints, in the Ramat-Gan Museum of Art, Israel.

Corneille was best known for radicalizing the conservative Dutch art world in the early 1950s, making modern art not only acceptable, but embraceable as well. He placed familiar subjects — birds, cats, women and landscapes — in mythological and often childlike contexts, imbuing them with spontaneity and bright, sensual reds.

“I am a painter of joy,” Corneille remarked at a 2007 exhibition of his work at the Cobra Museum, said Katja Weitering, the artistic director of the museum, in Amstelveen, near Amsterdam.

Beyond the Netherlands, Corneille’s work is in the collections of several American museums, including the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

Corneille passed away September 5, 2010 at Auvers-sur-Oise, France.

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