Oil on canvas signed lower right Charles Mertens measuring 116X57 cm (without the frame) representing a young teenager. Impressionist work at the doors of Belgian symbolism late 19th century school.
Charles Mertens (1865-1919):
painter portraitist and landscape Marinist. Charles Mertens Verlat student at the Fine Arts in Antwerp, his home town. He participated in the creation of the XIII group. The circle of XIII was founded in February 1891. The circle of XIII is formed by dissidents of the Antwerp group Als ik Kan. The circle consisted notably Léon Abry, Emile Claus (who still lived Antwerp), Edouard de Jans, Henri De Smeth, Edgard Farasyn Maurice Hagemans, Frans Hens, Evert Larock, Romain Looymans, Charles Mertens, Henry Luyten, Henry Rul, Leo van Aken, Louis Van Engelen, Piet Verhaert and Théodore Verstraete.
The circle lasted until 1899, and only organized three exhibitions during its existence. Notable artists were also invited to these shows, like albert baertsoen, Hubert Bellis, Franz Binjé, Alberic Collin, Adriaan Jozef Heymans, Fernand Khnopff, Max Liebermann, Constantin Meunier, Isidore Meyers, Jan Stobbaerts Alexander Struys, Gustave Vanaise and Guillaume Van Strydonck.
He painted landscapes including Zeeland is considered a precursor of Impressionism. He also directed, portraits and genre scenes. He decorated the ceiling of the Opera of Antwerp. At the time of the great war he settled in England. We find some of his works in the collections of the Royal Museums of Antwerp and Brussels