1871 - 1918
Marie Duhem, was born in Guemps on March 18, 1871 and died in Douai on July 9, 1918.
Marie Duhem’s parents ran a lace factory. From her childhood, she became familiar with the work of model designers. She becomes the student of the painter Adrien Demont, husband of the painter Virginie Demont-Breton. It was in their Wissant workshop that she met, in 1889, Henri Duhem. Eleven years older than her a passionate advocate of painting. They were married in 1890 and, the following year, she gave birth to a boy, Rémy (1891-1915). It was at this time they formed the group of Wissant (still called School of Wissant) centering around the Demont-Breton, each summer for several years, the Duhems, installed in their country house in Camiers worked with a whole group of friends in the countryside of Boulogne and the coastline of the Opal Coast. Among the most assiduous are Georges Maroniez, Francis Tattegrain, Fernand Stievenart or Felix Planquette.
Marie Duhem began to form friendships and acquire paintings with a formidable set of first-rate Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works, including Claude Monet, Paul Gauguin, Henri Le Sidaner amongst others. Le Sidaner was a regular visitor to their home and painted with them regularly.
Exhibiting abroad in London, Rome, St. Petersburg etc Marie Duhem was a painter involved in the cultural life of her time. Just like her husband she forged friendships with Camille Pissarro, Auguste Rodin and Henri Le Sidaner. She Executed an oil portrait (now preserved at the Dunkirk Museum of Fine Arts) with Le Sidaner revealing the intimism in which Henri Le Sidaner and Duhem worked..
During the First World War, the couple lost their only son, Rémy Duhem, a young painter with a promising future, killed on the assault of Les Éparges, on June 20, 1915. Marie Duhem, very affected by the untimely death of her son, died of a tumor, in the family home of Douai, July 9, 1918, at the age of 47 years. In 1922, Henri Duhem evokes the memory of his son and his wife in a story called The Death of the Home. Two years later, the art critic Camille Mauclair, a great friend of the couple, retraces the drawn and painted work of the two deceased artists, in a book with well-documented iconography, entitled Marie Duhem, Rémy Duhem: tribute, published by Jacomet.
Marie Duhem was a painter whose career had a national influence. She was named Officer of the Palmes académiques, named Knight of the Legion of Honor in 1912, she received a medal at the World Fair of 1900. A personal exhibition is dedicated to her in 1906, in Paris, at the Georges Petit Gallery. That same year, the State acquired an oil on canvas entitled "White Buttercups" for the Luxembourg Museum, now kept at the Musée d’Orsay, which also owns Duhems "Queens Daisies in a Vase".
Works in public collections:
Cambrai, Museum of Cambrai
Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery:
Douai, Museum of Chartreuse
Dunkirk, Museum of Fine Arts
Louvre Museum – Paris
Marmottan Museum – Paris
Orsay Museum – Paris
Valenciennes, Musée des Beaux-Arts: