An action-packed study of a warrior with a winged helmet by Belgian artist, Alexis Nys (1844-1926). He appears to be on horseback with the reigns in his left hand and a weapon in his right.
Nys probably completed this study during his time at the Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels where he trained between 1859 and 1873. He was an accomplished artist and exhibited widely including at the Prix de Rome and the Salon Triennal des Beaux-Arts.
In this piece, the winged helmet could be signifying a reference to the Celts or the barbarians. It’s unlikely to be Hermes, the ancient Greek god, as he’s not usually depicted with a shield.
The painting is housed within a sturdy vintage wooden frame.
Oil on canvas
23” x 29” / 59cm x 74cm
Year of creation
In its original untouched condition. The canvas was probably tucked away in a portfolio before being attached to its stretcher. As such, it has some wrinkles and undulations. There’s also craquelure in areas but the paint layer is stable.
Artist’s auction highlight
£6,105 achieved for ‘Côte hollandaise, Katwijk’ at Christie’s in 2013.