Private Collection, California, USA
Flameng was born in Paris in 1856, and went on to have many successes in his artistic career. He was trained as an engraver by his father, who was celebrated for this craft. Flameng turned to painting, and became a renowned history and portrait painter as well as a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts. He was awarded France’s highest civilian honour, the Legion d’Honneur, and subsequently designed France’s first bank notes. He received commissions in Paris, London, and New York – and notably commissioned for a portrait of Queen Alexandra. Later, Francois Flameng would receive esteem for his World War I painting and become a documenter for the War Ministry – in addition to honorary president of the Society of Military Painters. Critics at the time commented that his depictions of war were too realistic, rather than emphasising the tradition of dramatic, romanticised heroism. Many of his war paintings went on to be donated to the Musee de l’Armee in 1920.