Artist biography

Jean-Louis Forain 1852-1931

French draughtsman-satirist, painter, etcher and lithographer. Born in Rheims, son of a house-painter. Studied for a year with J. de la Chevreuse and briefly under Gérôme at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Copied drawings and etchings in the Louvre and the Bibliothèque Nationale; also studied modelling for a year under Carpeaux. First began to paint in the studio of André Gill in 1870. Became a friend and disciple of Degas and contributed to four of the last Impressionist exhibitions 1879-86. From 1887-90 became a prolific and famous contributor of satirical drawings of Parisian life and later political satire to Le Courrier Français , Le Figaro and other papers, accompanying the drawings by his own biting captions; also published two papers of his own, Fifre 1889 and (with Caran d'Ache) the anti-Dreyfus Psst...! 1898-9. First one-man exhibition at the Galerie Boussod-Valadon, Paris, 1890. After c.1900 he painted a number of law-court scenes influenced by Daumier, and in darker tones. Died at Le Chesnay, near Versailles.

Published in:
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.222