French painter, sculptor, printmaker and theatrical designer, born at Chatou, on the outskirts of Paris. Studied at the Academie Carrière in Paris 1898-9. Met Vlaminck, with whom he shared a studio about 1900, and Matisse. Painted little during his military service 1901-4. Worked with Matisse at Collioure in 1905 and from 1905-7 painted landscapes of Collioure, London and elsewhere in a brilliantly-coloured Fauve style; also decorated a number of ceramics for Vollard c.1906. In 1908 turned away from Fauvism under the influence of Cubism and Cézanne, and in 1911-14 made some works with archaic stylisation reminiscent of the Italian primitives and Byzantine art. First one-man exhibition at the Galerie Paul Guillaume, Paris, 1916. Served in the French Army 1914-18 and afterwards started to work in a more traditional style related to that of Renoir and Corot, and with a more sombre palette. Awarded First Prize at the 1928 Pittsburgh International. Also active from 1918 onwards as a designer for the ballet and opera (including the designs for the Diaghilev ballet La Boutique fantasque 1919), and illustrated various books with woodcuts, lithographs and etchings. Lived from 1935 mainly in the country at Chambourcy, working in isolation. His late works from 1939 onwards include a number of small sculptures of figures and heads in an Etruscan spirit. Died at Garches, near Paris.
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.166