AND IT’S TIME FOR … A MAJOR ART LESSON !
BY DR. NEO GUTIERREZ
In an art career that lasted less than 20 years altogether, French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec created incredible paintings, watercolors, posters, drawings, ceramic and stained-glass art, and an unknown number of lost art works. For a great view of his art work go to the art site listed at the very end of this entire message !
But now let’s get acquainted with him:
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
Henri Marie Raymond de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa (24 November 1864 – 9 September 1901), also known as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French: [ɑ̃ʁi də tuluz lotʁɛk]), was a French painter, printmaker, draughtsman, caricaturist, and illustratorwhose immersion in the colourful and theatrical life of Paris in the late 19th century allowed him to produce a collection of enticing, elegant, and provocative images of the modern, sometimes decadent, affairs of those times.
In a 2005 auction at Christie’s auction house, La Blanchisseuse, his early painting of a young laundress, sold for US$22.4 million and set a new record for the artist for a price at auction.[1
Henri Marie Raymond de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa was born at the Hôtel du Bosc in Albi, Tarn, in the Midi-Pyrénées region of France, the firstborn child of Alphonse Charles Comte de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa (1838–1913) and his wife Adèle Zoë Tapié de Celeyran (1841–1930). The last part of his name means he was a member of an aristocratic family (descendants of the Counts of Toulouse and Odet de Foix, Vicomte de Lautrec and the Viscounts of Montfa, a village and commune of the Tarn department of southern France, close to the cities of Castres and Toulouse). His younger brother was born in 1867, but died the following year. If he had outlived his father, Toulouse-Lautrec would have succeeded to the family title of Comte.
After the death of his brother, Toulouse-Lautrec’s parents separated and a nanny eventually took care of him.
Disability and health problems
Mr. Toulouse paints Mr. Lautrec (ca. 1891)
At the age of 13, Toulouse-Lautrec fractured his right femur. At 14, he fractured his left. The breaks did not heal properly. Modern physicians attribute this to an unknown genetic disorder .
Physically unable to participate in many activities enjoyed by males his age, Toulouse-Lautrec immersed himself in art. He became an important Post-Impressionist painter, art nouveau illustrator, and lithographer, and, through his works, recorded many details of the late-19th-century bohemianlifestyle in Paris. Toulouse-Lautrec contributed a number of illustrations to the magazine Le Rire during the mid-1890s.
After initially failing college entrance exams, he passed his second attempt and completed his studies.
By February 1899, Toulouse-Lautrec’s alcoholism began to take its toll and he collapsed from exhaustion and the effects of alcoholism. His family had him committed to Folie Saint-James, a sanatorium in Neuilly-sur-Seine for three months. While he was committed, he drew 39 circus portraits. After his release, he returned to the Paris studio for a time and then traveled throughout France. His physical and mental health began to decline rapidly owing to alcoholism and syphilis, which he reportedly contracted from Rosa La Rouge, a prostitute who was the subject of several of his paintings.
In his less-than-20-year career, Toulouse-Lautrec created:
- 737 canvased paintings
- 275 watercolours
- 363 prints and posters
- 5,084 drawings
- some ceramic and stained-glass work
- an unknown number of lost works
His debt to the Impressionists, particularly the more figurative painters like Manet and Degas, is apparent, for within his works, one can draw parallels to the detached barmaid at A Bar at the Folies-Bergère by Manet and the behind-the-scenes ballet dancers of Degas. His style was also influenced by the classical Japanese woodprints which became popular in art circles in Paris.
He excelled at depicting people in their working environments, with the colour and movement of the gaudy nightlife present but the glamour stripped away. He was a master at painting crowd scenes where each figure was highly individualized. At the time they were painted, the individual figures in his larger paintings could be identified by silhouette alone, and the names of many of these characters have been recorded. His treatment of his subject matter, whether as portraits, in scenes of Parisian nightlife, or as intimate studies, has been described as alternately “sympathetic” and “dispassionate”.
Toulouse-Lautrec’s skilled depiction of people relied on his painterly style, which is highly linear and emphasizes contour. He often applied paint in long, thin brushstrokes which would leave much of the board underneath showing through. Many of his works may be best described as “drawings in coloured paint”.
On 20 August 2018 Toulouse-Lautrec was the featured artist on the BBC television programme Fake or Fortune?. Researchers attempted to discover whether two sketchbooks were created by him.
NEO NOTE: CLICK ON THE SITE LISTED BELOW TO SEE BEAUTIFUL REPRODUCTIONS OF HIS ART WORK :
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