"[...] None. But if you absolutely insist on categorising me, I am an intimist." Henri Le Sidanier, upon being asked which school he belonged to.

Henri Le Sidaner was a French painter and pastellist. Son of a sea captain, he was born in Port Louis, Mauritius, an island situated in the Indian Ocean. In 1870, he and his family settled in Dunkirk, France. In 1880, Le Sidaner moved to Paris, where he discovered Impressionism and Post-Impressionism and was heavily seduced by it. He was granted admission to the École des beaux-arts in Paris and studied under Alexandre Cabanel from 1882 to 1885. From 1885 to 1894, Le Sidaner retired to the small town of Etaples, where he developed his personal painting technique and worked in solitude. In 1900, he purchased a house in the tiny village of Gerberoy (Seine-et-Oise), which became the inspiration for many of his paintings and was where he produced many of his beautiful still-lifes.

 

Le Sidaner travelled extensively throughout his life, visiting Holland, Belgium, Venice, London and New York. He also moved constantly throughout France. During his lifetime, he exhibited at the Paris Salon, the Galerie Georges Petit in Paris and the Goupil Gallery in London. He was awarded First Prize at the 1925 Pittsburgh International. His works hang in numerous museums around the world.

 

Le Sidaner's work is in the realist style, but his love of light and shadow add a poetic and dreamy quality to his technical expertise. Amazingly, the artist often painted from memory rather than directly on site.

 

He died in Paris of a heart attack in 1939.

 

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