Vlaminck, Maurice de

Vlaminck, Maurice de Biography

French painter whose experiments with pure, intense colour drawn straight from the tube and applied in thick daubs associated him with the Fauves.

Born in Paris, Maurice de Vlaminck was largely self-taught . He was a professional bicyclist and earned his living as a violinist before becoming an artist. Maurice de Vlaminck was noted for his brash temperament as well as his flair for painting landscapes. His interest in art dated from 1895, with lessons in drawing and study of the Impressionists, and in 1899 he began sharing a studio with Andre Derain, who had been a friend from childhood.

In 1901 Maurice de Vlaminck was overwhelmed by an exhibition of the art of Vincent van Gogh, whose works became a new influence; he also met Henri Matisse and first exhibited at the Salon des Independants, Paris. Though his work remained representational, its freer use of colour was moving in the innovative direction of Fauvism. In 1905 he participated in the controversial group show at the Salon d'Automne, when the term Fauve was first applied to canvases of bold colour, applied in a spontaneous and impulsive manner. By 1908, however, he had turned to painting landscapes of thickly applied grays, whites, and deep blues. His style moved closer to that of the final development of Paul Cezanne, and he gained a more solidly based sense of composition. About 1915 he began to achieve a personal, strongly stated, and thoroughly French Expressionist style.

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