Saturday, April 26, 2008

Jehan Georges Vibert

Jehan Georges Vibert [born 1840 - died 1902]
The Marvellous Sauce, ca. 1890
Oil on canvas, 25 x 32"
Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York

Jehan Georges Vibert (1840-1902)
The Church in Danger
Painting - oil on panel
25.4 cm (10 in.), x 46.4 cm (18.27 in.)
Private collection

Jehan Georges Vibert [born 1840 - died 1902]
The Wrath of the Bishop
Oil on canvas
14 x 11 inches (35.56 x 27.94 cm)
Collection of Fred and Sherry Ross, USA

Vibert, a French artist, debuted at the Salon of 1863 with La Sieste (The Siesta) and Repentir (Repentance).

The popularity of his works spread gained him fame in America and fetched high prices including commissions from John Jacob Astor IV and William Vanderbilt. A large collection of works by Vibert was amassed by the heiress May Louise Maytag on behalf of then Bishop of Miami, Coleman Carroll.

Vibert was one of France's most acclaimed Academic genre painters, renowned for his irony and wit. Vibert is best known for his satirical scenes from ecclesiastical life.

The Wrath of the Bishop depicts the fractures in French society caused by the divisions and disputes between French "liberalism" of the time and the French Church. The bishop, enraged by some article, is seated at his desk, and crushes under his foot, a copy of L'Intransigeant, a Liberal newspaper. The Bishop looks as if he is about to compose a suitable reply.

He painted cardinals so often that one tone of red he used was often called "Vibert red".

Vibert co-founded the Society of French Watercolorists in 1878 and served as its first president.

Vibert was also a fairly prolific playwright and staged many productions, in which he himself was also an actor. He was also a writer of note. His theory of painting was enunciated in La Science de la Peinture. In La Comédie en Peinture, he provided explanatory narratives for each of his works.