Leo Gestel Dutch, 1881-1941

Overview

Leo Gestel was born to the director of an art school in Woerden in 1881. Together, his father Willem Gestel and uncle Dimmen Gestel-who had painted with van Gogh-began instructing him in the arts at a young age. Leo Gestel endured financial setbacks early in his career and as a result began drafting book illustrations and advertisements for Dutch companies such as the technology firm Philips. On a trip to Paris, Gestel was exposed to the French avant-garde movement, which would have a profound effect on his style beginning in the 1910s. In 1913, Herwarth Walden offered him the chance to exhibit work in the Erster Deutscher Herbstsalon in Berlin. Gestel was known to summer in Bergen, and eventually joined the Bergen School, a movement characterized by expressionism and dark color with a definitive Cubist influence. Tragically, most of Gestel's works were lost when a fire destroyed his studio in 1929. After the accident he moved his practice to Blaricum and died nearly a decade later in Hilversum.

Museums and Public Collections

Frans Hals Museum

Kröller-Müller Museum

Rijksmuseum Twenthe

Teylers Museum

Stedelijk Museum Alkmaar

Drents Museum

Museum de Hallen

Singer Laren

Museum van Bommel van Dam

Museum de Fundatie in Zwolle

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Es Baluard Museu d'Art Modern

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