Born in 1865, Emile Van Doren grew up in Brussels, not far from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-Ter-Kapellekerk (Church of Our Lady of the Chapel). He first beheld the beauty of the Kempen landscape in 1890, following a visit to Genk, which was favoured by artists because of its particularly picturesque landscape. Van Doren even maintained that Genk was made for painting, a statement that would define the rest of his life. He moved to Genk where he met his wife, Cidonie Raikem. Totally fascinated by the beautiful landscape, it is always the focal point of his oeuvre. The Flowering Sweet Gale also came about because of this. The rich colour palette combined with the distinct painting technique, shows the agility of the elements.