Alfred De Dreux France

3-23-1810 Paris, FRA - 3-5-1860 Paris, FRA

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Dreux, Alfred De

Pierre-Alfred Dedreux, who signed his works as Alfred de Dreux was a French portrait and animal painter, best known for his scenes with horses.

After his father won the Prix de Rome for architecture in 1815, he lived at the Villa Médicis in Rome. While there, Théodore Géricault, a friend of the family, made portraits of him and Élise.

In 1823, at the urging of his uncle, the painter Pierre-Joseph Dedreux-Dorcy, he began studying art with Géricault and, later, with Léon Cogniet. At this time, horses were already his favorite subject. His first exhibition at the Salon came in 1831, he will exhibit there regularly until 1859  The following year, an equestrian portrait of the Duc d'Orléans became his entry to a position in the workshops of Eugène Isabey.

Shortly before the Duc's untimely death, Pierre-Alfred Dedreux made another portrait of him, together with his guards. King Louis-Philippe was pleased with it and, two years later, asked Dreux to accompany him on an official trip to England. He made many return trips there over the next few years. In 1848, he followed the King into exile in Surrey and painted numerous equestrian portraits of the English aristocracy.

He returned to Paris in 1852 and opened a studio where he created more equestrian portraits, this time of Emperor Napoléon III and his family, but still made frequent trips to England. In 1857, he began sharing a studio with Paul Gavarni, who he met while there.

There was a rumor that Pierre-Alfred Dedreux had been killed in a duel by Count Fleury, the Emperor's aide-de-camp. The rumor has been imposed, almost a hundred years later, by Alfred de Dreux's grand-nephew André de Fouquieres in his book of memoirs Fifty Years of Panache.

The logo of Hermès International is based on a drawing by Pierre-Alfred Dedreux.

Influences: Théodore Géricault, Eugène Isabey, Léon Cogniet
Traveled: Italy, England
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