June 7, 2017
Herbert C. Breinholt, South Sea Island Landscape, 1945, watercolor, 14 3/8 x 20 3/4 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art.
French artist Paul Gauguin was born on this day in 1848. Gauguin was a painter and sculptor who painted at the tail end of the Impressionist movement and into the more bolder Modernist era. He favored saturated colors and striking compositions in his paintings.
As a child, Gauguin lived with his grandmother in Peru, which significantly affected his artistic style. His artistry was honed as he returned to France as a young man and studied art in university. He returned to France and enlisted in the French navy, which also afforded him the opportunity to see many places around the world. After returning home and facing some economic distress, Gauguin decided to paint full-time.
Gauguin is well-known for painting during his extended travels and residency in Tahiti. Many of his most famous artworks were painted there, introducing the Primitivism trend in the Modernist era.