Louis Welden Hawkins studied with William Bouguereau, Gustave Boulanger and Jules Lefebvre at the Académie Julian in Paris; he later settled in Paris and became naturalised French in 1895. He was closely involved with the members of the Symbolist movement, including the painters Eugène Carrière, Puvis de Chavannes, the sculptor Auguste Rodin and the writers Stéphane Mallarmé, Laurent Tailhade, Paul Adam, Jean Lorrain and Robert de Montesquiou, and was at first a Symbolist painter. Subsequently, he began to use Impressionist techniques, striving to bring the two styles together. His portraits are inspired by Pre-Raphaelite work.
He exhibited in Paris from 1881 at the Salon des Artistes Français, where he won a third-class medal; at the Rosicrucian Salon in 1894 and 1895; at the Salon de la Libre Esthéthique in 1894; in Brussels in 1896 and 1898; and in Paris at the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts until his death.
Museum and Gallery Holdings
Paris (Mus. d'Orsay): Orphans (1881, oil on canvas); Portrait of a Young Man (1881, oil on canvas); The Eiffel Tower (after 1889, oil on canvas); Séverine (c. 1895, oil on canvas); The Sphinx and the Dream (1906, oil on canvas)