Thursday, April 28, 2011

100 painters ye shall know

57) Romans in the Decadence of the Empire by Thomas Couture 1815-1879
image from

Couture was another shoemaker's son and was from Senlis, a small town about 40 miles from Paris. Like so many great French painter he was from a working class background. Trained under Baron Gros he was a sensational young artist. The painting above is a modernized version of the "grand style'. He was strongly influenced by the venetian, Veronese. The silver color and classicism of the piece are balanced with a romantic conception that appeared contemporary to his viewers. This 1847 painting made him famous and is his masterpiece. He began to receive many portrait commissions and was a master at that genre.

Above; The Widow

Couture had a falling out with the Academy and opened his own atelier, rejecting the official means of teaching young artists. Couture taught Eduard Manet, Henri Fantin Latour, Puvis de Chavannes ( a muralist) and the American, John La Farge


Ramon said...

Awesome! Couture is a great painter. He wrote a book on painting which is available for free in English. It outlines conversations that he had, along with his philosophy of painting. said...

That portrait makes me want to do portraiture again.

Ramon said...

Shorter link to Couture's book (the first one I posted got cut off)

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thanks, I wish I could print all of those online books. I don't like reading them on my computer. I guess if I got a Kindle I could read them happily on that.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I always want to paint figures and heads. I don't have the social chops to be a portrait painter though.

Stapleton Kearns said...

OK, shorter.
...............Stape said...

Yeah..I know what you mean. I like painting from life and I like models with faces that I find interesting is some way. They are usually strangers on trains and I've never been able to go up to them and say " spend 12 hours of you life sitting still so I can paint you". I could never paint commissioned portraits! I never see what I am suppose to see. it's where the social niceties come in.