Jos Verdegem of Joseph Verdegem

Jos Verdegem

Jos Verdegem was a Belgian artist who was born in Ghent in 1897 and died there in 1957. He was a painter, draftsman and etcher. Education at the Academy in Ghent, led by F. Van Den Berghe and G. Minne. Realized (female) figures, nudes, circus scenes and figures, tramps, landscapes and still lifes. Became a friend of Joris Van Severen on the Yser Front in 1916 and participated in the so-called art company. After the war enrolled at the Ghent Academy, but still had sporadic lessons. Stayed in Paris from 1922 to 1929, met M. De Vlaminck, H. Matisse and G. Braque and became aware of a rather refined expressionism. From the press about this: "The merit of J.V. it indeed seems to me that he introduced a Roman expressionism in the Ghent art environment, as a contrast to the prevailing Germanic expressionism. He showed that there can also be an expressionism of sophistication. It could be called filtered expressionism." (W. Elias) Was also a gifted graphic artist. He tirelessly sought perfection, which explains why there are several states of several etchings. About his etchings: "The way in which he depicts the vibrations on a face, evokes the tension of a line and boosts the sensibility of a surface, betrayed an impressive etcher in Verdegem." Prize of Rome in 1925. Was a teacher at the Academy in Ghent from 1932 to 1944 and exerted a great influence on the post-war generation. The last years of his life were, from a purely human point of view, a series of failures. Yet he continued to work passionately without often exhibiting. Work in the museums in Ghent and Brussels, among others. Mentioned in BAS I and Two Centuries of Signatures of Belgian Artists. (PIRON)