This book shines a light on the neglected work of French artist Léon Bonvin.
This beautiful publication presents a catalog raisonné of Léon Bonvin’s work published in both French and English. Introduced by several illuminating essays and accompanying an exhibition at the Fondation Custodia, this book enriches our understanding of the previously overlooked, yet immensely talented, French artist.
Léon Bonvin never enjoyed the same notoriety as his half-brother, Francois (1817–87), who was a well-regarded realist painter in the nineteenth century. The few remaining sources characterize him as misunderstood and ill-fated. As he was struggling to make a living, Bonvin took over his father’s inn in Vaugirard, while continuing to paint watercolors. His work, depicting wildflowers, still lifes, and views of the still rural and working-class plain exhibit a deep sincerity.
Presenting new research on the life and art of Bonvin, this book documents all known works by the artist, including many drawings that have never been published before. Together, the essays and comprehensive presentation of his works provide an essential foundation for building an appreciation of Bonvin’s magnificent oeuvre.
About the Author
Ger Luijten is director of the Fondation Custodia in Paris.