Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Henri Rousseau

Henri Rousseau was a French painter, born in 1844. He wanted desperately to belong within the ranks of the traditional French Academy painters but it was not to be.

Rousseau was born to a poor family. His father’s debts even caused the family to lose their home at one point. Rousseau served in the army for four years before going on to become a customs officer at the edge of Paris. He worked until he was 49, painting on the weekends, until he could retire and focus fully on his art. He taught painting lessons, performed as a street musician, and did other odd tasks to earn enough money to live as he painted.

He was completely self-taught and this showed in his work. He wanted to paint flawless, realistic works but a naivety, a simplicity, persisted that he couldn’t shake. The traditionalist painters mocked him but he remained confident in his talent.
Rousseau’s favorite subject was the jungle but he never actually saw a jungle. He based his scenery on the botanical gardens in Paris and the animals were drawn from guide books and zoo pamphlets. Some of his subjects he never saw in three dimensions so his paintings have a flat look to them. Also, Rousseau sometimes grouped together animals that would never be seen together in nature. In one painting, the bananas hang upside down from a tree.

There were some who liked Rousseau’s paintings. For example, Picasso saw one of Rousseau’s paintings being sold on the street as a junk canvas that could be painted over by a serious artist. Picasso bought the painting and then went to meet this ingenious artist.
After his death in 1910, Rousseau began to gain popularity and now his canvases hang in museums around the world.

[The paintings shown above are The Sleeping Gypsy, Surprised!, and Tropical Forest with Monkeys.]

EDITED TO ADD: Create Your Own Rousseau Jungle

Return to main page.

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

thank you so much you have made this homework much easyer or me i have to do 3 pages os research on him and you have now field those 3 pages!!

niamh said...

thank you so much i had to do a double page spread on him with pictures and info about him. it has made its os much easier

Anonymous said...

Thank alot - this really helped with my homework! We had to do an
A3 poster on him. Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

thanks alot but does the family live rich or normal

Anonymous said...

thanks alot any way keep up with your hard work

Anonymous said...

thank you so much you're brilliant i had to do a project on him and it was an exam you've savd my life

Anonymous said...

thank you so much you're brilliant i had to do a project on him and it was an exam you've savd my life

Anonymous said...

this is so easy to read and is awesome because i have to work on him in schol and have to do a roport. but this is english and i have to do mine in welsh but this is sooo easy to translate. i love this website come on it ever day :) xxx

Anonymous said...

This is not very good information!!!

Anonymous said...

thanks alot this really hepled me with my homework aswell

Anonymous said...

thanks alot this really helped me with my homework aswell

Anonymous said...

this doesn't help much.....

Anonymous said...

Do you Know any info about Jungle Sunset By him like when it was made and where????????

Jessica said...

I don't know much about that particular painting, but I was able to discover that Rousseau painted Jungle Sunset in 1910. I can't tell you for sure where it was painted, but it was not painted in a jungle. Rousseau never visited most of the places he painted. Instead, he studied books and went to the botanical garden to get hands-on experience with the plants of the jungle.

I hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

Hi, tankyou for this website. It has helped me an awful lot. But, could please tell me what country Henri Rousseau was born in and where he died.

Thankyou again

Anonymous

Anonymous said...

thanks you helped me a lot :)

Matthew Bain said...

Amazing, had to do a double page spread all about him for a school project homework. This gave me everything I need to know. I go to the priory lsst in lincoln so i get hard homework for art.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this information I am doing a project on Henri rousseau at the moment creating a profile page and all this information helps me to present it!

Bryony

Anonymous said...

thank u so much u hav made this hmwk so much easier. u saved my lyf. i would hav got a 2 hours detension after skool if i had never done this hmwk.

Anonymous said...

is good for my hw

Anonymous said...

luv

Anonymous said...

I need to know where he was born and where he died this information is not very good!

Anonymous said...

he was born in 1844 f*****

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much,this website has helped me loads,it has made my research page on him very easy! :-)

Anonymous said...

awsome thanks for the help i had to do a A3 poster bout him and 2 page essay

Steph x

Anonymous said...

thank you this made it easier alot

Anonymous said...

it very good
like lot

Anonymous said...

this really helped with my homework thanks!

Anonymous said...

This helped me alot in my homwork THANKS AGAIN!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

When were these paintings done?

Liam said...

Crap info... When was this and that painted such a rubbish web...

Anonymous said...

thank you i have to do two sheets of a3 on him

Anonymous said...

omg this makes homework easier!
=D

Anonymous said...

Thank you soo much it helped a lot!!!

Anonymous said...

This has really helped me im gonna get an A* for this
Im comin on this website every day now
What about the painting negro attacked by a jaguar?
Thanks

Anonymous said...

thanks so much my homework is not a lost case after all

little bobby xx said...

This was very good as i needed some info on him for my HW as i have lost the sheet with info!! however it could do with more saying about were he was born what date and what date he died aswell!! xx :-D

little bobby xx said...

This was very good as i needed some info on him for my HW as i have lost the sheet with info!! however it could do with more saying about were he was born what date and what date he died aswell!! xx :-D

little bobby said...

This was ALOT of help as i lost my HW sheet which had the Henri Rousseau info on it, so thank you!! however it could of had where he was born and died other than just France! xx :-D

Anonymous said...

this was sooooo good thanks it helped me so much with my HW however it could of said where he was born and died instead of just France but THANK YOU!! :-D