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S. J. Vernoit

(b Mostaganem, March 14, 1930; d Mostaganem, 1991).

Algerian painter. A self-taught artist, he worked in France initially as a printer but later came to occupy a central position in the development of modern Algerian painting. He developed an abstract style of painting in the artistic milieu of Paris, exhibiting work at the Jeune Peintre exhibition in Paris in 1955, and at the Salon de Réalités Nouvelles in 1955, 1957 and 1958. On returning to Algeria in the early 1960s he devoted himself to painting, engraving and producing designs for the theatre, and in the following years he exhibited work in Europe, Japan, the Middle East, Russia and the USA. His paintings explore calligraphic compositions and motifs of Arab–Berber origin and display a sophisticated use of colour. Such oil paintings as Kabylie (1.14×1.62 m, 1960; Paris, Inst. Monde Arab.) and Olive Tree Mediterranean (1.16×0.89 m, 1977; see 1978 exh. cat.) were inspired by his experience of landscape. His works are in numerous collections, including the Musée d’Art Moderne, Paris, and the Musée National des Beaux-Arts, Algiers....

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Armenian, 20th century, male.

Born in Armenia.

Painter.

Puzant Topalian was an artist of the Arme­nian diaspora who contributed to the Beirut-based journal The Altar ( Pakin). He exhibited with the Salon des Artistes Libres Arméniens in Paris in 1945.