1885 - 1968
The Blue Headdress

Oil on canvas, signed lower left, inscribed and dated ‘Algers, 1958’
Image size: 26 x 33 inches (66 x 84 cm)
Hand made Orientalist gilt frame



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Deckers was a fine portrait painter as this painting shows. The soft pastel colours bring out the beautiful flesh tones. Within this painting are captured the youth and beauty of these girls for posterity. The colours all blend together and we have the powerful blue of the headdress framing all of the faces. He combines a strong sense of the individual with an intuitive grasp of the region.



Émile Deckers

Deckers studies at the Academy of Fine arts in Liege, then he went onto Paris. He won first prize in anatomy and the first prize for painting in 1904. The Belgian government in 1904 awarded him a travel grant.

At the age of twenty-one, he won first prize for historical composition, and in 1911 he was appointed a member of the Jury of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts.

He moved to Algiers in 1921 and became known as an ‘Orientalist’ painter, a justified reputation that brought him fame. He painted the local people, including portraits of young Kabyle, Tuareg or Southern and Atlas tribes. He produced large format portraits often of three or more people.

By 1930 he divided his time in the summer between Algiers and Belgium, In 1940 he moved permanently to Belgoum. Deckers exhibited in several places including Algiers and the Paris Salon.