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date: 14 November 2019

Ranson, Paullocked

(b Limoges, 1864; d Paris, Feb 20, 1909).
  • Belinda Thomson

Extract

(b Limoges, 1864; d Paris, Feb 20, 1909).

French painter and designer. The son of a successful local politician, Ranson was encouraged from the outset in his artistic ambitions. He studied at the Ecoles des Arts Décoratifs in Limoges and Paris but transferred in 1886 to the Académie Julian. There he met Paul Sérusier and in 1888 became one of the original members of the group known as the Nabis. From 1890 onwards, Ranson and his wife France hosted Saturday afternoon meetings of the Nabis in their apartment in the Boulevard du Montparnasse, jokingly referred to as ‘Le Temple’. Ranson acted as linchpin for the sometimes dispersed group. Noted for his enthusiasm and wit and for his keen interests in philosophy, theosophy and theatre, he brought an element of esoteric ritual to their activities. For example he introduced the secret Nabi language and the nicknames used familiarly within the group. He also constructed a puppet theatre in his studio for which he wrote plays that were performed by the Nabis before a discerning public of writers and politicians....

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