Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) was a French painter, printmaker, draftsman, and illustrator whose immersion in the colorful and theatrical life of late 19th-century Paris yielded an oeuvre of outstanding psychological insight, technical proficiency, and communication ability.
Toulouse-Lautrec is among the best-known painters of the Post-Impressionist period, yet he is also an important figure in the development of Modern art. His work bridges the gap between the traditional art of his time and the experimental art that was to follow.
With his expressive line drawings, Toulouse-Lautrec created a new form of portraiture that captured the energy and spirit of his subjects. His paintings, prints, and posters are characterized by a distinctive combination of wit, elegance, and eroticism.
Toulouse-Lautrec’s parents were members of the aristocratic class, but his own background was far from wealthy. He was born into a world of privilege, but he also experienced firsthand the gritty realities of poverty and disease.
Toulouse-Lautrec was a sensitive and talented artist who responded to the ugliness he saw around him with compassion and insight. His art is a celebration of the humanity of his subjects and a powerful statement against the dehumanizing effects of poverty and disease.
During his lifetime, Toulouse-Lautrec’s work was largely misunderstood and underappreciated. Today, he is recognized as one of the great masters of Post-Impressionism.