Theodore Gericault: biography and pictures

  • Year of birth: September 26, 1791
  • Date of death: January 26, 1824
  • A country: France


The age of the artist is different. Someone creates for 40-50 years, leaving hundreds of pictures to people, someone barely manages to reveal his talent ... Zheriko was allowed only a decade to work. His tragic death was a surprise to everyone and a huge loss for art. But each work of this master has become a model for several generations of artists, and in the history of art it is difficult to find a painter who is close in talent and depth.
Theodore Gericault was born in the family of wealthy bourgeois. The father had several tobacco plantations in the south of France, the mother came from a highly respected merchant family. The boy's childhood passed during the Great Revolution, which miraculously did not affect his family.
From his youth, Theodore was distinguished by two passions - horses and drawing. A good tone required that the scion of a famous family get a good education and serve the fatherland. After graduating from the prestigious college, Gericault enters military service, in the musketeers. By this time, revolutionary ideas had a bit shabby and lost their rebellious meaning. France from the republic turned into an empire, and the empire, as is known, requires an imperial style of art. Heavy, clumsy and rich style Empire style could not come to taste the young man who received the basics of pictorial skill from such famous artists as Vernet and Guerins, faithful to the old covenants of the great Flemish and Dutch.
The young musketeer wrote his first works, as expected, on the battle scenes. This period of creativity left us a lot of drawings and sketches depicting the horses loved by the master.
For 5 years (1810-1815) the artist carefully copies the work of Rubens, Rembrandt, Titian. All this time he is trying to comprehend the secrets of the masters of the past and find his own style. An important role in the life of Gericault played a trip to Italy. In contrast to France, in this country, painting traditions have continuously developed over 6 centuries, and the rest of Europe often took over everything that was born in Italy.
From the Italian trip Zheriko brings his most famous work "The Raft" Medusa "". The drama, emotionality, unprecedented accuracy and meaningfulness of the image surprised the French and left many indifferent. France has not yet adopted the fashion for romanticism, reveling in its own Empire style and the remnants of classicism. The French were not ready to appreciate the work of their great master.
It took quite a bit of time and criticism, adherents of academic art in painting, suddenly saw a talented and courageous master in Gericault. The French "grunted" and went to look at the picture a second time. Glory has come ...
Enjoying fame and a variety of orders, Gericault gets to work, which he conceived in 1812. Romantic, a citizen and a creative person, the artist was going to write a monumental work on the theme of the retreat of the French troops from Russia. The plot was known, the composition was developed, prototypes among the soldiers were searched. The tragic accident interrupted the life of the master. In 1824, during the usual training for horse riding in Géricault, he fell off his horse. The blow fell on the temple.
Several psychological portraits, battle paintings, several genre works, several unfinished sculptures and a huge number of drawings and sketches became the heritage of the master, in each of which you can see brilliant ideas of the master, which remained unfinished.

Paintings by Theodore Gericault

Sketch of the model
Raft "Medusa"
Officer rangers at the time of the attack
Wounded Cuirassier
Horse Racing at Epsom
Portrait of a crazy
Taming the bulls
Portrait of kleptomana
Portrait of a woman obsessed with card game
Portrait of the insane
Running free horses in Rome
Heroic landscape with fishermen

Watch the video: Théodore Géricault - Le Radeau de la Méduse The Raft of the Medusa (February 2020).