Odilon redon

Back home in his native Bordeaux, he took up sculpture, and Rodolphe Bresdin instructed him in etching and lithography. The next day I let the other source run, that of imagination, through the recollection of the forms and I was then reassured and appeased. Still, Redon remained relatively unknown until the appearance in of a cult novel by Joris-Karl Huysmans titled, rebours Against Nature.

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Redon produced nearly prints, beginning in with the lithographs collectively titled In the Dream. He began the formal study of drawing at fifteen but, at his father's insistence, he changed to architecture. Here, on an enormous die, a melancholy eyelid winked; over there stretched dry and arid landscapes, calcinated plains, heaving and quaking ground, where volcanos erupted into rebellious clouds, under foul and murky skies; sometimes the subjects seemed to have been taken from the nightmarish dreams of science, and hark back to prehistoric times; monstrous flora bloomed on the rocks; everywhere, in among the erratic blocks and glacial mud, were figures whose simian appearance--heavy jawbone, protruding brows, receding forehead, and flattened skull top--recalled the ancestral head, the head of the first Quaternary Period, the head of man when he was still fructivorous and without speech, the contemporary of the mammoth, of the rhinoceros with septate nostrils, and of the giant bear.

The composition of Saint Anthony at prayer used on the cover of the Ambroise Vollard edition returns in brilliant pastels as Woman amidst Flowers n. As a young boy he was very sickly, so his family decided to put him under the care of his uncle at the estate of Peyrelebade.

Redon died on July 6, Symbolists had their own visual language. In his late artistic career Redon did a complete and started using amazingly bright colours in his art, working mostly with pastel. The young Bertrand Redon acquired the nickname "Odilon" from his mother, Odile. The artist often regretted that he was not born at sea, "a place without a country on an abyss," which he perhaps felt would have better corresponded to the origins of his visionary sensibility, This work could thus be seen as representing a kind of alternative birth for Redon, signifying his awakening artistic consciousness.

odilon redon biography

The shapes of Galatea and Polyphemus both evoke genitalia. These drawings defied classification; unheeding, for the most part, of the limitations of painting, they ushered in a very special type of the fantastic, one born of sickness and delirium.

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Artist Feature: Who was Odilon Redon?