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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Redon, Odilon


The Chariot of Apollo
1905-14
oil embellished with pastel on canvas
Musée d'Orsay, Paris
http://www.musee-orsay.fr/

Redon, Odilon (1840-1916) is a French painter and graphic artist born in Bordeaux, one of the outstanding figures of Symbolism.

He had a retiring life, first in his native Bordeaux, then in Paris, and until he was in his fifties he worked almost exclusively in black and white, in charcoal drawings and lithographs. In these he developed a highly distinctive repertoire of strange creatures, insects, and plants with human heads, etc., influenced by the writings of Edgar Allen Poe. He remained virtually unknown to the public until the publication of J.K. Huysmans's novel A Rebours in 1884; the book's hero who lives in a private world of perverse delights, collects Redon's drawings, and with his mention in this classic expression of decadence, Redon too became associated with the movement.

He showed equal facility in oils and pastel. The flower pieces, in particular, were much admired by Matisse, and the Surrealists regarded Redon as one of their precursors. He was a distinguished figure by the end of his life, although still a very private person.
http://www.imaginarymuseum.net/view/flipcard