Coen Van Oven

Conrad Theodor, or Coen van Oven (1883–1963); Dutch painter.

Known for his characteristic portraits of family members and landscapes. In 1913 he moved to Amsterdam, where he stayed except for a short period (1947-49) in South Africa after the war where he visited Kimberley and Pretoria. He was a member of Arti et Amicitiae and the group called De Onafhankelijken.

Conrad Theodor ("Coen") van Oven was born on 21 Sept. 1883 in Dordrecht. At 16, having completed HBS, Coen said he wanted to become an artist. Whether his parents were happy with this intention of their youngest son is doubtful. His father asked advice from one of his former pupils, the well-known painter Jan Veth, who lived in Bussum. Veth replied in a letter dated June 24, 1900 that he was "particularly pessimistic about the career of the artist" and wrote:

I do not know if it will surprise you, but among the things that I am a bit proud of is the fact that I have managed to dissuade 2 or 3 young people who had planned to dedicate themselves to painting.

That did not help. Coen never gave up his intention to become an artist and even worked for three consecutive winters (1900-03) as a pupil of Jan Veth in his studio in Bussum.

Van Oven subsequently attended the Drawing Academy in Antwerp (1903-1904), the Drawing Academy in Brussels (1904-1905) and was from 1905-1906 was a pupil of the Dordrecht painter Roland Larij. From 1906-08 he stayed in Berlin, where he was taught by Adolf Meijer. After his stay in Berlin, he returned to Dordrecht where he worked until the end of 1913.

At the end of 1913, Van Oven left Dordrecht and settled in Amsterdam, where he initially held his studio in the Watergraafsmeer and later on at various other addresses. In June 1914 Van Oven said goodbye to his hometown with an exhibition in the hall of the Teekengenootschap Pictura in Dordrecht.
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First Collected by

Suzan Hamer


Collectors 7

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