French artists are among the best represented in the Louvre Museum. Complemented by the Musee d'Orsay and its fabulous collection of 19th century French impressionist artists, the Louvre Museum displays the world's most beautiful and complete collection of paintings by French artists up to the XIXth century anywhere in the world. Louvre Museum facts.
The collection of paintings by French artists of the Louvre Museum is unique in the world. Jean Fouquet, Nicolas Poussin, the Le Nain brothers, Philippe de Champaigne, Charles Le Brun, Georges de La Tour, Antoine Watteau, Jean Honore Fragonard, Madame Vigee Le Brun, Hubert Robert, Jean-Baptiste Greuze, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Eugene Delacroix are among the best represented XVIth to XIXth century French artists in Louvre Museum. Locate the French painting department on Louvre Museum map. The collection is worth a trip by itself. The Louvre is huge. Book a guided tour.
Antoine Watteau (1684 - 1721), a XVIIIth century French artist, spurred the revival of interest in colour and movement in the tradition of Rubens.
Watteau is credited with inventing the fetes galantes, scenes of bucolic and idyllic charm. Some of his best known subjects were drawn from the world of Italian comedy and ballet. The character of Pierrot in the Commedia dell'Arte was staged to be the fool. Watteau's sad clown has reason to be sad as he may be destined for a broken heart. Traditionally, the Pierrot's love interest, Columbine, leaves him for Harlequin. Despite his fate, the character of Pierrot is trusting, proves to be naïve and distant to reality.
The Paris uprising of July 1830, the Trois Glorieuses, was initiated by the republicans for violation of the constitution by Charles X, the last Bourbon King of France. He was overthrown and replaced by Louis Philippe, the last King in French history. Eugene Delacroix, a XIXth century French artist, witnessed the uprising and perceived it as a modern subject which he painted with romantic fervor. A woman personifying Liberty leads the people forward over the bodies of the fallen, holding France's national flag and brandishing a musket. In 1830, Delacroix was already the leader of the Romantic school in French painting. He rejected the emphasis on precise drawing that characterised the academic art of his time.
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres was a a XIXth century French artist. He considered himself to be a painter of history in the tradition of Nicolas Poussin and Jacques-Louis David. But, by the end of his life, Ingres's portraits were recognized as his greatest legacy. La Grande Odalisque, his most famous nude, was commissioned by Caroline Murat, Napoleon's sister. An odalisque is a concubine in the orient. Ingres transposed the theme of the mythological nude to an imaginary Orient. He painted a nude with long, sinuous lines bearing little resemblance to anatomical reality, but rendered the details and texture of the fabrics with sharp precision. The exhibition of La Grande Odalisque at the Salon of 1819 drew sharp criticism. Ingres was seen as disregarding anatomical reality. Another great work by Ingres in Le Louvre is the Turkish Bath.