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Pierre Laprade

French painter, watercolorist and illustrator

Laprade had good basic training, first at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts at Montauban and later at the Académie Carrière in Paris. He exhibited first at the Salon des Indépendants in 1901 and later showed his work regularly at the Salon d’Automne and at the Salon des Tuileries.

A Post-Impressionist who looked above all to the example of Cézanne, he was also a great admirer of the work of 18th-century French painters, and it is their example that accounts for his loose, fluid brushstrokes, subdued colours, delicacy and tendency to sentimentality.

He travelled often to Italy, making three prolonged visits there from 1908 to 1914, and underwent the influence of Italian artists such as Giovanni Fattori and Filippo Carcano.

In his pictures he treated both intimiste interiors and melancholic landscapes, for example The Corn (1919; Paris, Pompidou) and the watercolour Les Alyscamps (Montpellier, Mus. Fabre). He also produced a number of suggestive views of French cities, for example View of Paris (c. 1920; Lyon, Mus. B.-A.).

Laprade was also a prolific illustrator. Among his most notable works in this medium are an edition of Vers et prose by Paul Valéry, illustrated with reproductions of watercolours, and an edition of Jean de La Fontaine’s Amours de Psyché et de Cupidon, illustrated with original etchings. He also illustrated Marcel Proust’s Un Amour de Swann (Paris, 1930), Paul Verlaine’s Fêtes galantes and works by Gustave Flaubert and Guy de Maupassant, among others.

Alberto Cernuschi: Grove Dictionnary of Art
E. Jaloux: Pierre Laprade (Paris, 1925)
L. G. Cann: Laprade (Paris, 1930)
F. Florent: Pierre Laprade (Geneva, 1950)

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