LUCIEN LAUTRECFrench 1909 - 1991

Provenance: Collection Coiffée, Casablanca (from 1936) Exhibited: Paris, Salon des Surindépendants, 1934

LUCIEN LAUTRECFrench 1909 - 1991

Lucien Lautrec was born in Nimes and studied at the École des Beaux-Arts there from 1925 to 1927, completing his training in Ducos de La Haille’s fresco studio at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. In 1948 in Paris, with Robert Lapoujade and Michael Carrade, Lautrec founded the People’s Academy of Fine Arts led by Jean Bazaine, which until it closed in 1979, saw significant generations of Parisian artists flow through its doors.

Lautrec joined the group Forces Nouvelles in 1936, seeking to draw from the Realist tradition just as Tal-Coat was moving on. After World War II he would turn to Abstraction as the École de Paris then understood it, an Abstraction stemming from an observation and an analysis of reality, the font of emotion which could then be deconstructed in the work. Lautrec was also a theoretician, who alongside his artistic pursuits, fulfilled an important role as a teacher and art events coordinator, targeting the lower classes. A witness to everyday contemporary life, he tackled his landscapes in the knowledge that a factory may come to spoil them; he treated with equal warmth the building site’s toil and the Gypsy’s repose. Early on he showed an ability to collaborate with architects. His vast, bright compositions adorned the marriage chamber of the Town Hall at Brou (Eure-et-Loir) and two of his mural panels graced the council chamber at Versailles. Neither piece has survived.

He exhibited in Paris at the Salon des Tuileries and the Salon d’Automne from 1936 to 1939, when he was called up for military service. After World War II he featured in various group exhibitions, in particular the Salon de Mai, with compositions displaying an airy colour range dominated by azures and water greens.