Pierre Puvis de Chavannes

1824 Born in Paris, the son of the Chief Engineer of Mines.

1846 After serious illness interrupts his studies, he travels to Italy and there discovers an interest in art, being particularly impressed with the frescoes of Piero della Francesca.

1848 Visits Italy again. On his return he briefly studies with Delacroix and Thomas Couture but then studies independently.

1850 He exhibits for the first time at the Salon.

1852 Three submitted works are rejected by the Salon.

1856 Begins a relationship with Princess Marie Cantacuzène which lasts until her death.

1861 Puvis wins a medal at the Salon with two murals, Peace and War.

1864 He wins his first public commission for the Musée Napoléon after which he rapidly gains recognition as a mural painter.

1872 Puvis resigns as a member of the Salon jury marking his disapproval of their conservatism.

1874–8 Works on murals of St Geneviève for the Panthéon in Paris.

1884–6 He is in Lyon decorating the staircase of the Musée des Beaux-Arts.

1891–4 Undertakes a series of murals at the Hôtel de Ville in Paris.

1896 He is invited to decorate the Boston Public Library and travels to the United States to undertake the commission.

1897 Puvis marries Princess Marie Cantacuzène.

1898 Princess Marie dies in August and Puvis dies in October.



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Pierre Puvis de Chavannes - Selected Works

1869 Massilia, Greek Colony, Marseilles, Musée des Beaux-Arts

1869 The Beheading of St John the Baptist, Birmingham, Barber Institute of Fine Arts

1869 The Beheading of St John the Baptist, London, National Gallery

1872 Hope, Paris, Musée d’Orsay

1873 Summer, Paris, Musée d’Orsay

1877 Saint Genevieve at Prayer, Paris, Panthéon

1879 Young Girls by the Seashore, Paris, Musée d’Orsay

c1879 The Prodigal Son, Washington, National Gallery of Art

1881 The Poor Fisherman, Paris, Musée d’Orsay

1883 The Dream, Paris, Musée d’Orsay

1884 The Sacred Grove , Lyon, Musée des Beaux-Arts

1885 Ancient Vision , Lyon, Musée des Beaux-Arts

1886 Christian Inspiration, Lyon, Musée des Beaux-Arts

1887 Woman on the Beach, St Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum

1891 The Shepherd’s Song, New York, MOMA

1891 Summer, Paris, Hôtel de Ville

1892 Winter, Paris, Hôtel de Ville

Pierre Puvis de Chavannes - Featured Paintings

© Great Works of Western Art 2019