Charles Meynier Biography | Oil Paintings

11-24-1768 Paris, FRA - 9-6-1832 Paris, FRA

Meynier, Charles

At the young age of fifteen, Charles Meynier was taking art lessons from Pierre-Philippe Choffard. Later, as a student of François-André Vincent, Meynier won the second prize in the 1789 Prix de Rome competition and went to Rome to study, he became a member of the Académie de France in Rome.

In 1793 he returned to Paris during the Reign of Terror and started to paint large Neo-Classical works. That same year he entered a competition set by the Committee of Public Safety for the best work on a theme from the French Revolution. Taking the competition itself as his subject, Charles Meynier painted France Triumphant Encouraging The Sciences And The Arts. The painting won a prize, and thereafter Meynier rapidly established his reputation. He made his debut at the Paris Salon in 1795.

Under the First Empire, he received several public commissions for works celebrating Napoleon's triumphs. In 1806 he produced a series of drawings for bas-reliefs and sculptures to ornament the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, Paris, the monumental entrance to the Tuileries Palace that was built to celebrate Napoleon's victories of 1805. In 1808 Charles Meynier painted Marshal Ney and the Soldiers of the 76th Regiment Retrieving their Flags from the Arsenal of Inspruck, one of 18 works commissioned in 1806 to illustrate Napoleon's German campaign. The work, which depicts the retrieval in 1805 of three flags that had been lost in the campaign of 1800, was highly praised at the Salon in Paris of 1808.

In 1807 Charles Meynier was one of 26 artists who entered the competition to paint a scene from the recently fought Battle of Eylau. His Napoleon on the Battlefield of Eylau won one of the two honorable mentions. New studies on Charles Meynier now dispute his birth date of 1768 and put it five years earlier at 1763.

Art Movement: Neoclassicism.
Artists Influencing Charles Meynier: Pierre-Philippe Choffard.
Painters Charles Meynier Influenced: James Pradier.
Artist Biography compiled by Albert L. Mansour at The World's Artist, with text adapted from Wikipedia.

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