Duez served his apprenticeship with the painter Isidore-Alexandre-Augustin Pils, taking part in the Salon for the first time in 1868. Years later, in 1874, he was awarded a third medal at the Salon, followed by others in successive years. In 1879 he painted what became his most famous piece, the triptych of Saint Cuthbert, which combined a traditional theme with a landscape from the Norman coast, depicted with a marked naturalism. The French State acquired this painting for the Musée du Luxembourg at the 1879 Salon. During the following years, Duez became famous as a portrait artist. Apart from the portrait of his wife, Mme Duez, we should also mention that of the painter Ulysse Butin and that of Alphonse de Neuville. However, he soon returned to landscape painting with a historical and allegorical approach. In 1888 he depicted for the Sorbonne the decorative panel Virgil Seeking Inspiration in the Woods, and in 1892 he painted a pair of allegorical figures representing Botany and Physics for the Paris City Hall. Duez died on 5 April 1896, after suffering a brain haemorrhage while cycling in the Woods of Saint Germain.
Juan Á. López-Manzanares