Felix Ziem Biography | Oil Paintings

2-26-1821 Beaune, FRA – 11-10-1911 Paris, FRA

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Ziem, Felix

Félix Ziem was born Félix-Francois Georges Philibert Ziem in the Burgundy wine region of France. His mother, a Burgundy native married a Polish immigrant who was a prisoner of war during the Napoleonic wars. Félix Ziem wanted to be an architect and he went to the School of Architecture in Dijon to study, after graduating he worked as an architect for six years.

In 1839 he moved to Marseilles, to join his brother and work on an aqueduct project, he also started taking some informal painting instruction from Adolphe Monticelli. Following a visit in 1841 to Italy, he fell in love with the city of Venice, it was here that his painting hobby developed into a new career. Venice became the source for many of his paintings, and he returned annually for fifty years. In 1849, he moved from Marseilles and settled in Paris, dividing his time between the French capital and the forest of Fontainebleau, some thirty miles south, where he met and became the friend with artists Théodore Rousseau and Jean-François Millet.

Felix Ziem moved to Paris in 1849 and later the same year had his works exhibited at the Paris Salon, it was the first of many years he would exhibit in the Salon. In 1857, the government of France recognized his contribution to the art world by making him a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. In 1860 he moved to Montmartre, the artist quarters of the city of Paris. He also traveled throughout Europe and besides painting Venetian scenes, Felix Ziem painted landscapes from a variety of places including Constantinople, Martigues, Cagnes-sur-Mer and his native Burgundy.

He was a respected and recognized painter, and the first living artist to be included the Louvre Museum in 1910. Belonging to both the Barbizon School and Orientalist art movements, Felix Ziem is considered one of the precursors of Impressionism. A financially successful painter, he assisted many struggling young artists with encouragement and generous financial support.

Art Movement: Barbizon School, Orientalism.
Artists Influencing Félix Ziem: Adolphe Monticelli.
He Traveled To Italy, Turkey, Algeria, England, Netherlands.
Artist Biography compiled by Albert L. Mansour at The World's Artist, with text adapted from Wikipedia.

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