Gustave de Jonghe was a true academic painter in every sense. He had a highly successful career producing paintings of lavishly dressed women and families in fine interiors, portraits and historical genre scenes. As with any of the academic painters in Europe during the nineteenth century, de Jonghe had incredible technical abilities in both his rendering of the human form and nearly invisible brushwork.
De Jonghe was the son of Jan Baptiste, a master painter in his own right. De Jonghe studied painting in Brussels under the guidance of Navez. In 1863 de Jonghe obtained a gold medal at the Paris Salon and a medal in Amsterdam that same year. The following year he won a medal in Brussels.
Woman with a Parrot speaks to many fashionable currents in French painting of the 19th century. The artist is creating a narrative that is playful and interesting as the exoticness of the bird would have been a draw for the artist to depict. De Jonghe had a heightened sense of color and his use of emerald green in this painting demonstrates his flair for exciting color use. It was common at the time for an artist to show off and try to demonstrate his strong academic skills by attempting patterns and textures and the added challenge of a parrot in this case.
Private Collection Bedford, New York