(b Puits, Côte d’Or, 1865; d Paris, June 6, 1926).
French critic and collector. He trained at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris but soon devoted himself to literary and artistic criticism, producing a series of monographs on writers and artists. One of his more important books is Cubistes, Futuristes, Passéistes (1914), in which he briefly surveyed the work of a number of young artists. He praised Picasso’s virtuosity and adaptability and, whilst calling him the foremost Cubist, claimed Braque’s version of Cubism to be more accessible and decorative. The Futurists, with the exception of Umberto Boccioni’s sculpture, are all grouped together with a reprint of two of their artistic manifestos.
In 1924 Coquiot published two complementary books, Des Gloires déboulonnées and Des Peintres maudits. The first of these deals with ten artists, including Degas, Gustave Moreau and Félicien Rops, who he claimed had been falsely idolized by critics and dealers. These were contrasted with the ten artists of the second book, such as van Gogh, Cézanne and Gauguin, whom he regarded as largely ignored despite what he saw as their greater ability. In the latter book he included Rouault, whom he was one of the first to support as a critic and collector. He emphasized the ferocity of Rouault’s work, writing: ‘…he tracks the Woman, the Woman of all ages … As soon as Rouault seizes a woman, he pickles her in vinegar, in acids’ (p. 119). In addition to works by ...