Jules Bastien-Lepage (revisited)

Jules Bastien-Lepage
Jules Bastien-Lepage

Jules Bastien-Lepage was a French painter active in the late 19th century. His depictions of rural life were in a style called naturalism, an offshoot of realism, an art movement led by Gustave Courbet (as opposed to the more general use of the term today).

His paintings of field workers and village life came from his own rural upbringing and the sympathy with which he imbues them is genuine, as exemplified by his portrait of his grandfather (images above, 4th down).

I find fascination with his subtle and understated handling of values, along with his subdued color palette; both feel ideally suited to his primary subject matter. However, at times he painted in a higher key, as in his portrait of actress Sara Bernhardt (images above, 6th down).

Bastien-Lepage is best known for his painting of Joan of Arc, now in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (images above, bottom two).

For more, see my previous post on Jules Bastien-Lepage.


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