Louis Welden Hawkins French, 1849-1910
Louis Welden Hawkins born on 1st July 1849 in Germany spent most of his youth in England.
Around 1870, he settled in France and distanced himself from England both mentally an physically. After his study at the Academy Julian he entered the Beaux Arts Academy.
In Grez /Loing to the south-east of Paris, near Barbizon a group of foreign artists had gathered around the influencial painter Jules Breton.
In 1881 Les orphelins was exhibited at the Salon de la Société des Artistes Français. Painted in Grez the painting had a great success and the critics highly-praised the painting for its sensitive and dramatic qualities.
From this moment on, Hawkins execute many villages scenes and portraits of peasants. These individuals depicted are mostly anonymous figures painted to capture the instant moment of village life.