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Pierre Joseph Redouté

Saint-Hubert 1759 - Paris 1840


Pierre Joseph Redouté (1759-1840) was one of the most famous flower painters of all time, he was born into a Flemish painters' family, who earned a living by producing decorative and church paintings. At an early age, he painted natural subjects. At the age of 16 he helped decorate the Karlsburg near Bouillon, eagerly studying the paintings of the Old Masters (with a particular focus on van Huysum). In 1782 he went to Paris, where he initially worked as a decorative painter at the "Theatre des Italiens". In his spare time, he frequently drew in the Jardin du Roi. Here he caught the attention of the botanist Charles Louis L'Héritier, who encouraged him to produce anatomical studies, introduced him to dissection techniques and offered him free access to his botanical library and plant collection.
Pierre Joseph Redouté contributed to L'Héritier's "Stirpes Novae" and "Sertum Anglicum", catching the eye of the flower painter Gérard von Spaendonck, who, together with other artists, produced drawings and paintings for the famous Vélins du Roi. Spaendonck recruited Pierre Joseph Redouté as a staff member, and he subsequently contributed over 500 paintings to this huge undertaking.
An important aspect of this collaboration was that Redouté was introduced to Spaendonck's watercolor technique, by which he used to produce flower paintings with a bright transparency. Finally, Marie-Antoinette appointed him as her court painter. Encounters with the royal family were, however, rare. A famous incidence was Redoute's visit to the royal family in prison during the revolution. They had Pierre Joseph Redouté come to see them, because a rare cactus was in bloom and they wanted this beautiful moment captured in a picture.
During the 1790s, Redouté became one of the most popular flower painters. He perfected the color stipple engraving technique, which he had learned during a stay in London and first applied it in his illustrations for de Candolle's work "Plantes Grasses". From 1802 he published his "Liliacées", in which he largely applied the technical possibilities of color printing to the large and evenly colored leaves and blossoms. In this work he also breached the flower painters' tradition of framing the plants with an outer contour line.
In 1805 he was appointed court and flower painter to the Empress Josephine. After she had been overthrown, he remained in close contact with the Bourbon royal family. From 1817 to 1824 he produced the work that was to become the peak of his success, namely the monography "Les Roses" in an excellent print by Firmin Didot. Each delivery of the finished color copperplates, was received with a storm of enthusiasm, but in spite of his fame and his employment at court, he continued to attribute more importance to the scientific detail than to the effects of composition and color seen in purely artistic flower paintings.
From 1822 until he died, Pierre Joseph Redouté occupied a simple position as a painting teacher, succeeding Spaendonck, and often talked about his art in front of over 150 students in the large hall of the Buffon gallery.


Pierre Joseph Redouté - Choix des plus belles fleurs et des beaux fruits. 135 plates plus 5 loosened
Pierre Joseph Redouté
Choix des plus belles fleurs et des beaux fruits. 135 plates plus 5 loosened
27,750 $
Details
  - Herbarum vivae eicones, 2 in 1 Band

Herbarum vivae eicones, 2 in 1 Band
11,100 $
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  - Gart der gesuntheit

Gart der gesuntheit
5,550 $
Details
Johann Christoph Esper - Schmetterlinge + Ausländische Schmetterlinge, zus. 20 Bände
Johann Christoph Esper
Schmetterlinge + Ausländische Schmetterlinge, zus. 20 Bände
5,550 $
Details
Augustin-Pyrame de Candolle - Plantarum historia. 2 Bände
Augustin-Pyrame de Candolle
Plantarum historia. 2 Bände
4,440 $
Details
Johann Michael Seligmann - Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel, Bd. I und II
Johann Michael Seligmann
Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel, Bd. I und II
4,440 $
Details
Hieronymus Brunschwig - Liber de arte distulandi
Hieronymus Brunschwig
Liber de arte distulandi
4,440 $
Details
Benjamin Maund - The Botanic Garden
Benjamin Maund
The Botanic Garden
3,330 $
Details

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