15 April 1812 Born in Paris, France
Born early in the 19th century, Rousseaux falls into the group of artists famous just before the impressionists burst on the scene. In some ways he represents the very aspects of art that the French impressionists rebelled against. However, Thoreaux and his peers from the Barbizon school themselves rebelled against popular art at the time. Famous artists in the early to mid 1800's were producing mainly allegorical works with half naked heroes and bare breasted women. Thoreaux and his friends focused on celebrating the natural countryside and the people who inhabited it.
When talking about Rousseaux it's easy to fall into the trap of showing his delicate oil landscapes and in particular his trees, but today I'm going to share his fabulous sketches. Unlike the Impressionists, the Barbizon school encouraged it's followers to create rough field sketches in graphite and watercolor: The artist then used them as references for large studio pieces. Rousseaux created what appears to be quick sketches with a lovely fluid hand. Given the choice I would much rather own one of his landscape drawings than a Rousseaux landscape painting.
Studied under Paul de St Martin
Influenced by Corot, Constable, Ruisdael and Hobbema
1834 Settled in Barbizon, France
1849 First class medal at the Salon in Paris,France
1855 Exposition Universalle
With Dupre, Diaz and Millet he founded the Barbizon school
1867 Died at Barbizon, France