Artist biography

French painter and draughtsman. Tentative early works suggesting the influence of Fantin-Latour, were soon succeeded by landscape paintings, in which he began to simplify the subject into broad areas of colour. Nude, sometimes known as Fauve Nude (1898; Bordeaux, Mus. B.-A.), was one of the earliest works in which he used separate brushstrokes of vivid colour, prefiguring the style that was later to be called Fauvism.

Marquet found it difficult at first to sell his works, but in 1900 he was hired with Matisse to paint the Art Nouveau ornaments of the Grand Palais for the Exposition Universelle.

Although his technique and use of colour were less violent than those of such artists as Vlaminck or Derain, in 1906 he produced some of his best and most characteristic Fauve paintings. It was during this period also that, under the influence of Japanese brush paintings, he devised a remarkably animated and spontaneous form of India ink drawing.

Subsequently, Marquet worked in more tonally quiet colours, but with the yellows, greens and greys expressing the nuances of light on water, his favourite subject. In Paris he almost always lived on the quais of the Seine, from which he was able to paint the river. He also travelled constantly. These trips are recorded in a number of paintings in which he responded to the light and atmospheric conditions characteristic of each place.

His late paintings continued to testify to the acuteness of his observation and freshness of vision.

Bibliography
G. Besson: Marquet (Paris, 1929)
A. Rouveyre and G. Besson: Marquet: Dessins (Lanzac, 1943)
M. Marquet: Marquet (Paris, 1951)
F. Daulte and M. Marquet: Marquet (Lausanne, 1953)
F. Jourdain: Marquet (Paris, 1959)
Albert Marquet (exh. cat. by J. Cassou and M. Sembat, Bordeaux, Gal. B.-A.; Paris, Mus. Orangerie; 1975)
Albert Marquet (exh. cat. by M. Marquet, F. Daulte and M. Paret, Lausanne, Fond. Hermitage, 1988)

JEAN SELZ

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