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(Neoclassicism, Romanticism and Art Styles in 19th century - Art Map)


Henri Gervex


Henri Gervex

(b Paris, 10 Sept 1852; d Paris, 7 June 1929).

French painter. His artistic education began with the Prix de Rome winner Pierre Brisset (1810–90). He then studied under Alexandre Cabanel at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, where his fellow pupils included Henri Regnault, Bastien-Lepage, Forain, Humbert (1842–1934) and Cormon; and also informally with Fromentin. Gervex’s first Salon picture was a Sleeping Bather (untraced) in 1873: the nude, both in modern and mythological settings, was to remain one of his central artistic preoccupations. In 1876 he painted Autopsy in the Hôtel-Dieu (ex-Limoges; untraced), the sort of medical group portrait he repeated in 1887 with his Dr Pean Demonstrating at the Saint-Louis Hospital his Discovery of the Hemostatic Clamp (Paris, Mus. Assist. Pub.), which celebrated the progress of medical science with a sober, quasi-photographic realism. Gervex’s most controversial picture was Rolla (1878; Bordeaux, Mus. B.-A.), refused by the Salon of 1878 on grounds of indecency, partly because of the cast-off corset Degas had insisted he include. The painting shows the central character in a de Musset poem, Jacques Rolla, who, having dissipated his family inheritance, casts a final glance at the lovely sleeping form of the prostitute Marion before hurling himself out of the window. As his friend, Manet, had done the year before with his rejected Nana (1877; Hamburg, Ksthalle), Gervex exhibited his work in a commercial gallery, with great success.



A portrait of Marie-Clotilde de Faret Legrand, Comtesse de Fournes


An Elegant Man on a Terrace




Femme Resuse a la Toilette


Five Hours At Paquin


A Painting Jury, 1885, Musee d'Orsay


The Coronation of Nicholas II




Madame Valtesse de la Bigne

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