Roger Somville (1923-2014) was a Belgian painter known for his expressive style and socially engaged themes. Born on November 13, 1923, in Schaerbeek, a suburb of Brussels, he developed an early interest in the visual arts.

Somville received his art education at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels and later at the École nationale supérieure des arts visuels de La Cambre. His work was strongly influenced by his political beliefs and his engagement with social issues. Somville was a fervent supporter of Marxism, which is evident in his work that often highlights the struggles of the working class and social inequality.

In the 1950s and 1960s, Somville gained recognition with his large murals, the most famous of which is “La Wallonie” (1976), a monumental fresco in the Brussels metro. His paintings are characterized by a powerful, expressive style with a clear narrative element, often focusing on human figures in socially charged situations.

Somville was not only active as an artist but also as an activist. He was a vocal critic of the commercialization of the art world and defended the role of art in society as a means for social change. His works and writings reflected his belief that art should be accessible to everyone and should give a voice to the oppressed.

In his later years, Somville continued to paint and exhibit his work. He passed away on October 31, 2014, but his influence endures in the Belgian art scene and beyond. His works are included in numerous collections and continue to inspire artists who are engaged with social and political issues.

Roger Somville’s legacy is marked by his tireless dedication to art that is not only aesthetically compelling but also socially relevant.