Bless, Henry

, a painter of history and landscape, was born at Bovine, near Dinant, in 1480. He acquired his skill in the art merely by the strength of his natural genius, assisted by a diligent study and observation of the works of Patenier, without having any other instructor: and at last rendered himself very eminent, particularly by his landscapes. His best performances were bought up by the emperor Rodolph, and they are still preserved at Vienna. His style of composition in historical subjects resembled the style of the Flemish artists of that age, and exhibited a great number of figures finished with extreme neatness. But he crowded several subjects into one design; as in his picture of the disciples at Emmaus, he represented not only that incident, but in different groupes disposed in the back ground, he represented likewise the | different parts of the passion of our Saviour. And yet, notwithstanding the impropriety of that manner of composing, his pictures were so delicately pencilled and finished, and his landscapes in particular so agreeably invented, so full of variety, and well executed, that even in Italy his works were in great request, and were distinguished there by the appellation of the owl-pictures for he fixed an owl, as his peculiar mark, in every picture he painted by which the works of this master are always indisputably known. He died in 1550. 1

1 Pilkington. Biog. Univ.