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Artists in 60 Seconds: Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin


Movement, Style, School or Type of Art:


Date and Place of Birth:

November 2, 1699, Paris, France


Chardin may possibly have been the greatest still life painter to ever pick up a brush. Though of the Rococo era, there is little of its lighthearted gaiety in his work. Instead, Chardin's genre scenes depict the everyday life of middle-class France, while his still lifes are of commonplace objects. His (presumed; he kept it a secret) technique of slowly combining thick layers of paint with thin glazes to show light inspired van Gogh, Cézanne, Matisse and Braque, among many others.

Important Works:

  • The Copper Drinking Fountain, ca. 1734
  • Return from the Market, 1739
  • The Prayer Before Meal, 1744
  • Still Life with Jar of Olives, 1760

Date and Place of Death:

December 6, 1779, Paris, France

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