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Jules Joseph Lefebvre (1836 – 1911)

Lifespan: 1836 - 1911

Related: academic art - eroticism in art - French art

Chloe (1875) - Jules Joseph Lefebvre

Pandora (1882) - Jules Joseph Lefebvre

Truth (1870) - Jules Joseph Lefebvre


Jules Joseph Lefebvre (1836 – 1911) was a French figure painter. He was an instructor at the Académie Julian in Paris. He is chiefly important as an excellent and sympathetic teacher who numbered many Americans among his 1500 or more pupils. One of his famous students was the Scottish born landscape painter William Hart. Georges Rochegrosse was his pupil. He was long a professor at the École des Beaux-Arts.

His paintings are usually single figures of beautiful women. He created a great sensation with his "Reclining Woman" (1868). Now in the Luxembourg, "Truth" (1870), a nude woman holding aloft a mirror, is probably his best-known work. His other works include "La Cigale" (1872, National Gallery of Victoria); "Chloe" (1875, Young and Jacksons Hotel Melbourne); "Mignon" and "Graziella" (1878), both in the Metropolitan Museum, New York; "Slave Carrying Fruit" (1874, Ghent Museum); "Yvonne" (1876, Luxembourg); "Diana Surprised" (1879, École des Beaux-Arts); "La Fiametta" (1881), from Boccaccio; "Psyche" (1883); ""Lady Godiva" (1890); "A Daughter of Eve" (1892).

Among his best portraits were those of M. L. Reynaud and the Prince Imperial (1874). Among his many decorations were a first-class medal at the Paris Exhibition of 1878 and the medal of honor in 1886. He was a Commander of the Legion of Honor and a member of the Institute. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jules_Joseph_Lefebvre [May 2006]

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