The directory «Artists»
Belgian sculptor. He was the eldest member of a family of sculptors, which included his six brothers, the most famous of whom were Joseph Geefs (1808–85; Prix de Rome winner in 1836) and Jean Geefs (1825–60; Prix de Rome winner in 1846). He studied at the Antwerp academy under the two Van Geels, father and son, before completing his studies under Jean-Etienne Ramey (1796–1852) at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He travelled to Italy in 1829 and was made a teacher at the academy when he returned to Antwerp. He retained this position until 1840 but settled in Brussels. His first works (exhibited from 1828) were predominantly elegiac in mood. Soon, however, Geefs revealed a realism full of simplicity and power in, for example, the monuments to General Belliard, Frédéric de Merode (erected in Brussels in 1836 and 1837) and Peter Paul Rubens (1841; Antwerp). Geefs was held in high esteem, dominating the Belgian sculptural world of his day.
Belgium, 1981, Statue of Leopold I
Belgium, 2002, Congress Column with Statue of Leopold I