Camille Liausu – The Bohemians – Circa 1920
Oil on canvas painting depicting a bohemian family with their caravan and horse. There are remains of a signature in the lower left corner and a signature and title on the stretcher: Camille Liausu "Les bohémiens".
Alcide Marie Camille Liausu, French artist born 22 November 1894, in Biarritz; died 26 October 1975, in Paris. Painter, watercolourist. Figures, nudes, portraits, landscapes, still-lifes, designs for tapestries for Les Gobelins and theatre costumes.
Camille Liausu got his start in drawing at an art school in Bayonne and subsequently studied at the École des Beaux-Arts in Bordeaux. He arrived in Paris in 1919 and spent time at the Beaux-Arts in the studio of the painter Fernand Cormon. In 1921, he had his first exhibition in Paris alongside Roger Bissière, Louis Latapie and André Lhote. He was influenced by these but what he retained from cubism can only be summed up in a few principles of construction that support the expression of feeling. His compositions consisted of simple sculptural forms. In 1923, he exhibited at the Galerie Bernheim, then with the Compagnie de la Commune Libre de Montmartre. For many years, Liausu exhibited regularly at the Salon d'Automne, Salon des Tuileries and Salon du Grand Palais. It was in 1923 that Camille Liausu and Roger Bissière (his life mate) had workshops built in Parc Montsouris near Braque and Latapie. Around 1925, he painted one of the pillars of the bar La Coupole in Montparnasse.
Renowned painter of the interwar period, he was present everywhere alongside the greatest of the day (Othon Friesz, Vlaminck, Utrillo, Suzanne Valadon, Dunoyer de Ségonzac, Seyssaud, Foujita, Matisse, Kisling, Signac, Survage, van Dongen, Bonnard, Dufy, Marcoussis, Picasso, Pascin, Derain ...) exhibiting alongside them in the best galleries and art shows. From the start of the Second World War, Camille Liausu voluntarily withdrew from the world to dedicate himself entirely to his art and to his passion. Astonishingly, after having reached the apex of recognition everywhere, renown for his painted works, the remarkable purity of his drawing, the sobriety of the colours, the natural attitudes of his characters, the ease and simplicity of the profession, he shied so completely away from public life. He made appearances only three times between 1945 and 1960: for two exhibitions and the execution of two works, commissioned by the State. Until his death Camille Liausu painted relentlessly: landscapes, portraits, works of composition. But he guarded his paintings from the public, without ever showing or exhibiting them.
Sources: Benezit, Dictionary of Artists; Palais SVV; Archives de France.
Artist: Camille Liausu (1894-1975).
Signature and title on the reverse.
Medium: Oil on canvas.
Condition: Very good condition.
Dimensions: 50 x 60 cm. / 49 ¾ x 23 ½ in.
Frame: 58 x 68 cm. / 22 ¾ x 26 ¾ in. Wood. Good condition with a few blemishes.