Ary Scheffer Netherlands
2-10-1795 Homberg, GER - 6-15-1858 Argenteuil, FRABack to Artist IndexView Artists Paintings
Ary Scheffer started exhibiting at the Salon de Paris from 1812 on. He started to become recognized in 1817 and in 1819 he was asked to make a portrait of the Marquis de Lafayette. Perhaps because of Lafayette's contacts, Scheffer and his brothers were politically active throughout their lives and he became a prominent Philhellene.
Ary Scheffer was made commander of the Legion of Honour in 1848. As a captain of the Garde Nationale he escorted the royal family in their escape from the Tuileries and escorted the Duchess d'Orléans to the Chambre des Députés where she in vain proposed her son to be the next monarch of France. Scheffer fought in the army of Cavaignac during the popular uprising in Paris, but he was so shocked by the cruelty and hatred from the government's side and the misery of the lower classes that he withdrew from political activity and refused to make portraits of the family of Napoléon III.
When Ary Scheffer left Guérin's studio, Romanticism had come into vogue in France, with such painters as Xavier Sigalon, Eugène Delacroix and Théodore Géricault. Scheffer did not show much affinity with their work and developed his own style, which has been called "frigidly classical".
One of the reduced versions of his Christus Consolator (the major work today to be found in the Van Gogh-museum, Amsterdam), lost for 70 years, was rediscovered in a janitor's closet in Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Dassel, Minnesota in 2007. It has been restored and is on display at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.
Ary Scheffer was also an accomplished portrait painter, finishing 500 portraits in total. His subjects included composers Frédéric Chopin and Franz Liszt, the Marquis de la Fayette, Pierre-Jean de Béranger, Alphonse de Lamartine, Charles Dickens, Duchess de Broglie, Talleyrand and Queen Marie Amélie.
After 1846, he ceased to exhibit. His strong ties with the royal family caused him to fall out of favor when, in 1848, the Second Republic came into being. Shut up in his studio, he produced many paintings that were only exhibited after his death in 1858.
Art Movement: Romanticism
Influences: Johan Bernard Scheffer, Cornelia Lamme, Pierre-Narcisse Guérin
Traveled: Netherlands, France, Belgium, Germany, England