Jean Louis Forain (French , 1852 – 1931)
‘Danseuses dans les coulisses’
Oil on canvas
Signed ‘F.’ (lower right)
29 x 20in. (73.5 x 50.5cm.)
This painting is included in the catalogue raisonee currently in production by Madame Florence Valdes-Forain, a certificate of authenticity will accompany the painting from Madame Valdes-Forain.
Often the most sort after works of the Belle Epoque revolve around the ballet with the likes of Degas’ works, remaining the centre pieces of major collections throughout the world. This particular composition by Forain mirrors elements of Degas’s studies and shows the subjects waiting in the wings ready for their performance. The contrasts of the ballerinas to the darkenss have been skilfully picked out using confident brushstrokes and bold colour. This is very much in the ebb of the post impressionist movement.
When you consider the top prices of Forains are in excess of £400,000 at auction our work is extremely attractively priced.
When Jean Louis Forain died in 1931, he had been regarded by no less an esteemed author and commentator on contemporary art than Guillaume Apollinaire, who considered Forain among the most significant of living artists. When you consider who was around in that period that was extremely high praise indeed.
Forain was born in Reims, but when still a child moved to Paris. He first worked as a caricaturist for the thriving Parisian press, but wanted to develop more artistic skills. He enrolled at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, where he studied under Gérôme and Carpeaux. He became a close friend of Rimbaud, as well as Paul Verlaine and Joris-Karl Huysmans.