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Athena S. E. Leoussi

(b Paris, Feb 15, 1802; d Annet-sur-Marne, June 27, 1868).

French painter and pastellist. The son of a porcelain-maker, he first learnt painting in the studio of a porcelain decorator. After a period as a theatre decorator and a dancer, he became a pupil of the animal painter Joseph François Pâris (1784–1871). He devoted himself to landscape painting and became one of the precursors of plein-air painting. Referring to himself as a ‘romantique-naturaliste’, he was a member of the new Naturalist school of landscape painting that emerged in the 1830s in opposition to the official classicism of the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. He was one of the first to paint sur le motif (from life) in the forest of Fontainebleau, and he also made frequent visits to Barbizon, joining that group of artists known as ‘le groupe de Marlotte’. His works consist largely of views of Normandy and the Paris environs; he concentrated on thatched cottages, farmyards, prairies, ponds and riverbanks. He made his début at the Salon in ...

Article

French, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 27 May 1871, in Paris, France; died 13 February 1958, in Paris.

Painter (gouache), watercolourist, engraver, potter. Religious subjects, figures, landscapes. Stage sets, designs for stained glass, designs for tapestries.

Georges Rouault completed his primary education in 1885 and was apprenticed to stained-glass artists – first the Tamonis, then Hirsch. He received a direct offer from Albert Besnard for stained-glass windows for the School of Pharmacy to be made from his design sketches, but he refused out of loyalty to his employer. He was encouraged to consider painting as a career, having been introduced to the appreciation of art by his grandfather, Alexandre Champdavoine, who, modest white-collar worker though he was, knew and admired Honoré Daumier, Gustave Courbet, and Édouard Manet. Rouault achieved entry to the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1891, first in Elie Delaunay’s studio, then in Gustave Moreau’s (where he met Henri Matisse, Albert Marquet, Rudolf Lehmann, Henri Evenepoel, and others). Though he failed twice at the Prix de Rome, he won the Prix Chenavard in 1894 and, by 1900, he had obtained a mention and a bronze medal. In 1903, as Gustave Moreau’s executor, he became the curator of the Musée Gustave Moreau in Paris....