Raoul Dufy - vendere e comprare opere
3 June 1877, Le Havre (France) - 23 March 1953, Forcalquier (France)
Raoul Dufy was a French painter, draughtsman, designer and printmaker of the classic modern period.
Born in 1877 in Le Havre, a town in north-western France, Dufy worked as a young clerk in a coffee import company. At 18 he took evening classes at the local art school under Charles Lhuillier, a former student of Ingres. It was there that he befriended his colleague Emile Othon Friesz, with whom he later shared a studio in Montmartre.
In 1900, a state scholarship took him to the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris. As the final part of his studies, Léon Bonnat took him into his studio.
In 1901, the artist showed his art for the first time as part of an exhibition. In addition to his work as a painter, Dufy also produced ceramics, tapestries and woodcuts. In contrast to his colleagues, who specialised in social-critique themes, Dufy preferred the representation of less sensitive topics such as leisure activities, cityscapes and portraits of the coast of Normandy. The Impressionist landscapes of Claude Monet and Camille Pissaro had a lasting influence on the young artist. When Dufy discovered a painting by Henri Matisse in an exhibition of the Salon de Indépendants in 1905, he began using stylistic elements of Fauvism. This movement, which had only just developed, was known in particular for its use of bright, radiant colours. After a short period of fascination with the works of Paul Cezanne, he then turned to Cubism. The highlight of his artistic career was his work on the ceiling painting for the Pavilion of Electricity at the World Exposition in Paris in 1937. His brother, the painter Jean Dufy, assisted him in the completion of the then largest fresco in the world. Throughout his life, the artist went on numerous trips throughout the country and abroad. His workplaces included the beach at Saint-Adresse, which was a favourite place of his artist colleagues Eugéne Boudin and Claude Monet.
Starting in the 1950s, it became more and more difficult for him to carry out his usual work due to rheumatic osteoarthritis. In 1952, Dufy was awarded the Grand Prize for Painting at the 26th Biennale. Although special treatments in Boston were able to temporarily alleviate Dufy’s suffering, he died in 1953 as a result of the treatment’s serious side-effects. Today, many of his works can be found in the largest and most prestigious museums in the world, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.
Works by Raoul Dufy have been sold successfully at Dorotheum auctions for several years. On 25 May 2014, his 1935 painting St. James Palace was sold for €99,693 in a classic modern auction.