Edward Antoon Porteilje was born in Anvers on the 8th of February 1861, the son of John Frederik Pieter Portielje (1829-1895) the well travelled portrait painter and member of the Dutch School from Amsterdam, who settled in Anvers and has paintings in the Museum of Cologne - “Espagnole” and in the museum in Cincinatti – “Dame paree de joyaux”.
After completing his artistic studies, he became a member of the Belgian School of Painters and began to specialise in depicting the rural life of his native Belgium. His work was exhibited throughout Europe and the Museum of Anvers acquired examples of this fine artist for its collection, one entitled “Taquinerie” particularly stands out. His attention to the smallest detail of the native dress and household furniture and utensils, have caused him to be remembered as a recorder of an age long since forgotten. Further his ability to capture the soft lighting effects of his subject matter set him apart from his contemporaries.
The quality of Portielje’s figure work is second to none in Belgium for this period. Apart from his paintings which are found in museums, examples of this superb artist can now be found in private collections all over the world. Portielje has also painted many fine interiors and murals in palaces, town halls and castles over Europe. This esteemed artist’s work is also exhibited in museums in Antwerp, Chicago and Sydney.His life and works are mentioned in all of the leading art history dictionaries including Benezit, Kunstlexicon and “Popluar 19th Century Painting”.