Musée d'Orsay: Graphic arts

Graphic arts

Antoine endormi [Antoine Sleeping]
Charles Angrand
Antoine Sleeping

In 1896, Charles Angrand withdrew to Saint-Laurent-en-Caux, near his mother, and devoted himself exclusively to drawing for the next ten years. He was...
La vie du peintre. Enfance de l'artiste - L'Académie Julian - Dans Paris [The Painter's Life. The Artist's Childhood - The Julian Academy - In Paris]
Pierre Bonnard
The Painter's Life

In his biography of Bonnard in 1927, Charles Terrasse revealed the existence of a small sketchbook of about ten pages, the first five of which are devoted to...
Projet décoratif pour une salle à manger [Decorative design for a dining room]
Bonnard, Pierre
Design for a dining room

"In my opinion, competitions have never, or almost never, produced anything worthwhile" was Bonnard's reply in an interview in 1898. Perhaps he had in mind...
Projet de paravent "aux lapins"[Design for a folding screen "with rabbits"]
Pierre Bonnard
Folding screen "with rabbits", plan

The vogue for all things Japanese was so great in the 1890s that not only prints, but also fans and screens, became highly fashionable. Like Vuillard in the...
Flodden Field
Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones
Flodden Field

Edward Burne-Jones, along with William Morris, was the most important artist in the second Pre-Raphaelite group. This gouache is a study for a low relief...
Etude d'homme [Study of a Man]
Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones
Study of a Man

This study, dated 1885, should perhaps be seen in relation to one of the decorative cycles Burne-Jones worked on in the 1880s. In particular, the Perseus...
Le four à plâtre [The Lime Kiln]
Paul Cézanne
The Lime Kiln

In his drawings and watercolours of isolated houses amongst the woods in the countryside around Aix, Cézanne skilfully created a contrast between the rigid...
Les pots de fleurs [The Flower Pots]
Paul Cézanne
The Flower Pots

At Jas de Bouffan, the Cézanne family estate near Aix, a greenhouse had been put up in the grounds. This was where Cézanne could withdraw to work in peace...
Young Man Sitting, Study. Self-Portrait known as At the Easel
Gustave Courbet
Self-Portrait known as At the Easel

Characteristic of the early self-portraits produced by Courbet between 1842 and 1854, this drawing can be dated to the second half of the 1840's. At that...
Autoportrait [Self-portrait]
Gustave Courbet

This self-portrait is one of the rare mementos that Courbet directly left concerning the events linked to the Commune and its suppression. This charcoal...
La liseuse endormie [The Sleeping Reader]
Gustave Courbet
The Sleeping Reader

The model that inspired this beautiful drawing was possibly Virginie Binet, who had been living with Courbet for many years. An almost identical female...
Alphonse Promayet
Gustave Courbet
Alphonse Promayet

Alphonse Promayet (1822-1872) was one of Courbet's childhood friends. A violinist by profession, he followed the painter to Paris, where he taught music, and...
Drawing relating to Dans la forêt [In the Forest]
Pascal Dagnan-Bouveret
In the Forest, drawing

This drawing relates to In the Forest (Nancy, Musée des Beaux-arts), a painting presented by Dagnan-Bouveret in 1893 at the Salon de la Société Nationale...
Le tub [The Tub]
Edgar Degas
The Tub

Presented at the eighth Impressionist exhibition in 1886, this pastel is one of a series of seven pictures produced by Degas in the mid 1880's on the theme of...
Portrait of Edouard Manet
Edgar Degas
Portrait of Edouard Manet

After the scandal provoked by Déjeuner sur l'herbe at the 1863 Salon des Refusés, Manet progressively became the leading figure in the movement, dubbed "New...
Danseuses [Dancers]
Edgar Degas

In this pastel, Degas revisited a theme he had already tackled in his work in the 1870s – ballerinas resting. He also went back to his regular studies on...
René de Gas
Edgar Degas
René de Gas

This portrait was produced by Degas around 1855-1856, when he was only twenty one or twenty two years old and when he was preparing to go to Italy for almost...
Rochers sous-bois à Bagnoles-de-l'Orne [Rocks and undergrowth at Bagnoles-de-l'Orne]
Edgar Degas
Rocks at Bagnoles-de-l'Orne

In 1860, Degas went for the first time to Ménil-Hubert in Normandy, to stay with his friend Paul Valpinçon. It was there that he painted his first racing...
Paysage de Bourgogne [Burgundy Landscape]
Edgar Degas
Burgundy Landscape

In early autumn 1890, Degas and the sculptor Bartholomé took a trip together out of Paris and into the heart of Burgundy. When he arrived at Diénay, to stay...
Esquisse pour L'Oratorio, panneau central de la décoration L'éternel été [Sketch for The Oratorio, central panel of the decoration The Eternal Summer]
Maurice Denis
Sketch for The Oratorio

In 1904, Maurice Denis was commissioned to produce the decorative panels for the music room of Curt von Mutzenbecher, the director of the Imperial Theatre in...
La nuit de Noël [Christmas Eve]
Gustave Doré
Christmas Eve

Gustave Doré started his career at the age of 15 as a caricaturist for the magazine Journal pour rire. He then became widely known as an illustrator through...
Crâne aux yeux exorbités [Ogling Skull]
Julien-Adolphe Duvocelle
Ogling Skull

This is one of Duvocelle's more macabre works. It seems out of key with the moralising and religious aims of memento mori. This Latin expression, which means...
Jeune garçon nu [Nude Boy]
Paul Gauguin
Nude Boy

This drawing was a study for one of the two characters in the painting Young Breton Bathers (1888, Hamburg, Kunsthalle). Executed in the colours of the...
Autoportrait [Self-portrait ]
Paul Gauguin

In Papeete, on 2 September 1903, the second posthumous sale of the effects of Paul Gauguin was held opposite the governor's residence, on the place du roi...
Scène avec plusieurs personnages [Scene with several characters]
Bernhard Hoetger
Scene with several characters

Trained in Düsseldorf, the sculptor Bernard Hoetger went to Paris in 1900 and was particularly influenced by the work of Rodin. Finally, he decided to move...
Le vestibule [The Vestibule]
George Le Brun
The Vestibule

In the early part of his career, Georges Le Brun devoted himself to sober depictions of peasant interiors, taking inspiration from the Italian and Flemish...
Portrait de Georges Rodenbach [Portrait of Georges Rodenbach]
Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer
Portrait of Georges Rodenbach

Lucien Levy-Dhurmer used pastel, his favourite technique, for this portrait of the Belgian poet Georges Rodenbach in 1896. Although Georges Rodenbach, a...
Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer

This graceful female figure is clearly a personification of the city of Florence. In one hand, she holds a red lily, the emblem of the Italian city, and in...
Le Silence
Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer
Le Silence

Le Silence, a picture that Levy-Dhurmer kept throughout his life, is without doubt one of his most fascinating works. It has the suggestive power of an icon,...
Le lac Léman [Lake Geneva]
Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer
Lake Geneva

To the Symbolists, forever in search of the sensuous, the landscape genre was, on the face of it, without interest. One of them, however, Lucien...
La femme au chat [Woman with a Cat]
Edouard Manet
Woman with a Cat

It is tempting to see in this drawing an initial idea for Olympia (Musée d'Orsay), but it is very different from known sketches of Victorine Meurent, who...
Portrait de madame Edouard Manet sur un canapé bleu [Portrait of Madame Edouard Manet on a blue sofa]
Edouard Manet
Portrait of Madame Edouard Manet on a blue sofa

Perhaps influenced by his friend Degas, Manet often used pastels. The liveliness of this technique enabled him here to create an interplay between the fabrics...
Le tub [Woman in a tub]
Edouard Manet
Woman in a tub

This pastel is one of the artist's most beautiful portrayals of a woman bathing. All the characteristics of Manet's style are there: a special blend of...
Cinq jockeys au galop [Five jockeys galloping]
Edouard Manet
Five jockeys galloping

In 1864, Manet produced a watercolour (Cambridge, Fogg Art Museum) and a painting (now disappeared) of six horses and their jockeys at the finish of a race at...
Portrait of Irma Brunner [Portrait d'Irma Brunner]
Edouard Manet
Irma Brunner

Between 1879 and 1882, Manet produced a stunning series of pastel portraits of women. This medium offered him freshness, lively colour and a powdered material...
Musiciens à l'orchestre [Musicians in the Orchestra]
Edouard Manet
Musicians in the Orchestra

This drawing is of great interest because it gives us a better understanding of Manet's creative process. In fact it is his later version in ink of a rough...
La barricade [The Barricade]
Ernest Meissonier
The Barricade

As an artillery captain in the National Guard, Ernest Meissonier had witnessed the massacre of insurgents on a barricade of the rue de l'Hôtel-de-Ville...
L'Apparition [The Apparition]
Gustave Moreau
The Apparition

The Apparition portrays Salome who, according to the Gospels, bewitched the ruler Herod Antipas, the husband of her mother Herodiad, with her dancing. As a...
Le jeune homme et la Mort [The Young Man and Death]
Gustave Moreau
The Young Man and Death

At the 1865 Salon, Gustave Moreau had exhibited a painting in tribute to the painter Théodore Chassériau, who had died in 1856 at the age of 37. The two men...
L'Ennemi [The Enemy], illustration for the poem by Charles Baudelaire
Armand Rassenfosse
The Enemy

This drawing was a preparatory work for an engraving that was to appear in an 1899 edition of Flowers of Evil by Baudelaire (1821-1867). The editor had...
Odilon Redon

In the 1870's, his "black" period, Odilon Redon drew literary, fantastic and visionary subjects in charcoal, expressing his quest for metaphysical discovery,...
Odilon Redon

Against a background of bare mountains, the monumental and solitary figure of Parsifal stands out. This character is taken from an opera in three acts by...
Un parc la nuit [A Park at Night]
Jozsef Rippl-Ronai
A Park at Night

After starting his training in Munich, Rippl-Ronai came to Paris where he worked for three years in the studio of his fellow countryman, the painter Munkacsy....
L'initiation sentimentale [Sentimental Initiation]
Félicien Rops
Sentimental Initiation

Sentimental Initiation is the title of the third volume of Latin Decadence, a vast series of books or a kind of treatise of passions, to which the French...
La barrière [Gate]
Ker-Xavier Roussel

After 1900, Ker-Xavier Roussel revealed himself as a master of pastel painting with his numerous mythological compositions and his highly coloured...
Le dernier labeur du jour [The Last Task of the Day]
Giovanni Segantini
The Last Task

In 1880, Segantini left the city - Milan - for la Brianza in the foothills of the Alps. Between 1886 and 1894 he lived in Savognin in the canton of Grisons,...
La nourrice [The Nurse]
Georges Seurat
The Nurse

The nurse and her charge is a recurrent theme in Seurat's work. He did not try to make portraits of individual women, but to catch a social type, a familiar...
Le noeud noir [The Black Bow]
Georges Seurat
The Black Bow

The technique developed by Seurat in the early 1880s was based on the use of the contrast between black and white to define forms. On the rough surface of...
Scène de théâtre [Scene from a Play]
Georges Seurat
Scene from a Play

The cafés-concerts celebrated by Degas and Manet in the 1870s were open-air theatres with makeshift stages. Stars like the singer Theresa accompanied their...
Saint-Tropez. Matin de fête [Saint-Tropez. Morning of celebration]
Paul Signac
Saint-Tropez. Morning of celebration

A drawing based on the painting known as Saint Tropez. Port in celebration, from 1895 (disappeared in 1912), Saint-Tropez. Matin de fête was destined for...
Rue Vercingétorix
Paul Signac
Rue Vercingétorix

Following Seurat's example, the young Signac started drawing with Conté pencil, and completed his drawings without lines, using black and white for areas of...
Erik Satie
Paul Signac
Erik Satie

This drawing remained in the artist's family until it entered the Musée d'Orsay collections in 1996. It is part of a fine collection of portraits drawn...
The Dominos
Léon Spilliaert
The Dominos

Spilliaert, a self-taught artist, created his own personal world somewhere between Symbolism and Expressionism, mainly using graphic media: ink, gouache,...
Portrait de l'artiste par lui-même [Self Portrait]
Léon Spilliaert
Self Portrait

Between 1902 and 1909, Spilliaert concentrated on the theme of self portraits. Although his first attempt in 1902 showed a studied almost academic realism, he...
Clair de Lune et lumières [Moonlight and Light]
Léon Spilliaert
Moonlight and Light

This urban landscape is from a series that Spilliaert produced around 1909-1910 in Ostend (Belgium), a seaside resort on the North Sea where the artist spent...
Digue la nuit [Dyke at Night]
Léon Spilliaert
Dyke at Night

After a short period at the Académie des Beaux-Arts in Bruges between 1899 and 1900, Spilliaert was predominantly self-taught, building a career in his...
Le Désir et l'Assouvissement [Desire and Satisfaction]
Jan Toorop
Desire and Satisfaction

Jan Toorop, born in Java in 1858 when it was still a Dutch colony, soon came to Europe and studied at the Amsterdam Academy from 1881 before continuing his...
Figure de douleur [Sorrowful Figure]
Edouard Vuillard
Sorrowful Figure

It is very tempting, on the face of it, to see in this despondent figure an illustration relating to Pierre Quillard's play, The Girl with the Severed Hands...

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