Théophile Emmanuel Duverger

Théophile Emmanuel Duverger
07.09.1821 (Bordeaux, France) - 1886 (Unknown)

Nationality: French


Théophile Emmanuel Duverger was born in Bordeaux on September 17, 1821. He was an artist of remarkable natural talent and was essentially self-taught. Unlike most of his artistic colleagues who had a formal training at an academy, his training was soley based on his experiences with nature and his understanding of the works he observed in museums.

Duverger lived and worked in Ecouen (the Seine-et-Oise region near Paris) and at the age of 25 he made his debut at the Paris Salon, where he continued to exhibit for most of his life. In 1861 Duverger won his first medal at the Salon in Paris. Two years later he received an honorable mention and in 1865 he won another medal at the Salon. Louis Auvray (1810-1890), art critic of the Salon, pointed out in his review how well the emotions in Duverger’s paintings are depicted and how touched he was by seeing Duverger’s work.

Duverger painted many portraits in his early years, but later focused primarily on interiors, often with children. Many are charming images, evoking the pleasant simplicity of rustic life. These works range from domestic scenes (a mother and child or a girl dusting the piano) to more aristocratic interior scenes for a wealthier public. As the art critic mentioned, Duverger had an uncanny ability to capture the mood and spirit of the people and children he was painting.

It is not known exactly when Duverger died. It is assumed that he was deceased in 1901, since the Salon catalogue of 1902 does not feature him as an artist who was still alive. Duverger has emerged as one of the greatest French genre painters of the 19th century and his paintings are widely sought after by art dealers, collectors and museums throughout the world.


Work by Théophile Emmanuel Duverger is represented in the collections of Musée d'Orsay, Paris, and the Walters Art Museum in Maryland (US). 

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Dusting the Keys

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