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Odilon Redon

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Odilon Redon

French, (1840–1916)
Odilon Redon was a French Symbolist artist known for his pastels, prints, and paintings. He depicted a variety of motifs, including dreams, floral still lifes, landscapes, and mythological scenes. He studied with the artist Stanislas Gorin as a teenager. Gorin introduced him to the works of Eugène Delacroix, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, and Gustave Moreau. On his father’s wishes, Redon planned to study architecture at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, but failed the entrance exam. However, he remained in the city, reading the literary works of Gustave Flaubert, Edgar Allan Poe, and Charles Baudelaire, and briefly studying painting under Jean-Léon Gérôme. In 1865, he returned to his family home in Bordeaux and where he learned etching and lithography from the eccentric artist Rodolphe Bresdin. Returning to Paris in 1871, Redon worked exclusively in black and white until the 1890s. This sudden use of bright color is attributable to his close friendships with the painters Paul Gauguin and Maurice Denis.

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