- Category : 1897-births
- Type : MGE
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Triple Split
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 1
Dutch deaf-mute visual artist of the School of Limburg.
He was the fifth child of a poor Catholic family of fourteen children. His father was the shoemaker Mathias Hubert Eijck (ca. 1869 - 5 Jan 1937, Meerssen) and his mother was Maria Aloysia Augusta America (26 May 1870, Wijlre - 27 April 1933, Meerssen).
At age 11 he became deaf-mute after protracting rubella and typhoid fever. His language development was severely hampered, but his talents for drawing and visual arts were recognised and developed early. From age 14 till 18 he worked as a decorator at the Ceramique pottery in Maastricht. Next, he worked a year as house painter.
The writer and NRC Handelsblad art editor Maria Viola (1871-1951) discovered his artistic talents. She arranged that he could learn lip reading (1916) at the Rotterdam Institution for the Deaf and Dumb and at the same time could study at the Academy of visual arts in Rotterdam (1916-1917). But during WW1 he became ill, because of hunger and poverty. He needed hospitalisation in Rotterdam and recovered with his parents in Meerssen: He then felt like the "Prodigal Son", but his artistic friends convinced him to come back.
From 1918 to 1922 he studied at the State academy of visual arts in Amsterdam (1918-22). As he had no money, his friends often had to sustain him. The in the iconographic art of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance specialised Prof. Antonius Johannes Derkinderen (20 Dec 1859, 's-Hertogenbosch - 2 Nov 1925, Amsterdam) was his most influential teacher. "Der kinderen" means "of or from the children". Eyk means "oak tree". In 1920 he won the Royal Prize for Painting and in 1922 the Dutch Prix de Rome for his his end examination painting "De Verloren Zoon" (The Prodigal Son). The prize was a stipend for three years to study in Italy and France.
He stayed in Rome from 1922 till 1923. Here he met the Swedish paintress Karin Meyer whom he married in 1924 Stockholm. Thereafter, they lived and worked in France (1924-1931), Maastricht (1931-32), Zeist (1932-34), Amsterdam (1934-37) and Schimmert (1938-1969).
He concentrated on monumental art, such as murals, stained glass and grisailles on opaline glass, but was also a noted painter and drawer. He made contributions to the World exhibitions in Brussel (1935) en Paris (1937). During the war he refused to become member of the Kulturkammer. He stayed in "Huize Ravensbos" in Schimmert, sometimes hiding the persecuted and lived from bartering. After WW2, he got many orders to restore the during the war broken lead-lights of churches, that glare in the golden light of the sun. Also, the official crowning painting of Queen Juliana was commissioned to him (1948). He was a teacher at the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht and the Free Academy in Utrecht. He wrote many letters to befriended artists.
Initially his deeply feeling expressionistic work was appreciated. His religious inspired work was noted in Catholic countries like France and Spain, but ignored in Holland. In the sixties, he was criticized for his conservative views, because he persisted in his ancient religious and iconic style in a time that artists were supposed to "develop" their styles. Because of these criticisms and his increasing deafness, he lived more and more in isolation in the house he had designed for himself (1938) "Huize Ravensbos" in Schimmert, near the Cauberg. It might refer to his "Elijah fed by ravens" feeling of being thrown into a spiritual desert.
To celebrate his seventieth birthday, the writer Bertus Aafjes wrote "Charles Eyck zeventig jaar" (1967).
Charles Eyck died 2 Augustus 1983 at the age of 86.
From 29 May till 3 Augustus 2003 the Heemkundevereniging in Houthem-St. Gerlach held a retrospective exposition of his work.
On 23 December 1924 he married in Stockholm the Swedish paintress Anna Theresia Katarina Meyer (20 April 1901, Stockholm - 9 Jan 1996, Maastricht), a student of Fernand Léger and admirer of Bonnard. He had met her in Italy, thanks to his 1922 Dutch Prix de Rome stipend. They got two children: Anna M Bimba (ca. 1926 - 2 Sept ‑2009) and Ragnar M.H. Eyck (1930).