Derain, Andre

Derain, Andre Biography

French painter who was one of the principal Fauvists. Born in Chatou, near Paris. Derain studied painting in Paris at the Academie Carriere and at the Academie Julian. In 1905, he became a member of the fauvist ("wild beast") group, along with Maurice de Vlaminck and Henri Matisse. The group was so named because of the savage nature of the bold and unrealistic color used by the artists. Most of Derain's oil paintings of this period were landscapes and cityscapes. They show the typical fauvist characteristics of raw color (often squeezed onto the canvas directly from the tube), choppy brushstrokes, frenzied composition, and lack of concern for perspective or the realities of a scene.

After 1908, Derain began to experiment with other styles when he temporarily came under the influence of the oil paintings of Paul Cezanne. The influence of Paul Cezanne led him to prefer quieter colors and more controlled compositions. In 1910, Derain produced highly geometric, cubist-influenced works. His late artwork, after 1912, showed the influence of many styles-including classical French art and African sculpture-and tended to become increasingly traditional and derivative, characterized by muted color and fussily elaborated technique.

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