9 facts about Jacques-Louis David

By Gwylym Owen

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Jacques-Louis David (French: [ʒaklwi david]; 30 August 1748 – 29 December 1825) was a French painter in the Neoclassical style, considered to be the preeminent painter of the era. In the 1780s his cerebral brand of chronicles painting marked a bend in taste away from Rococo frivolity toward classical austerity and severity and heightened feeling, harmonizing similar to the moral climate of the utter years of the Ancien Régime.

David unconventional became an active aficionado of the French Revolution and friend of Maximilien Robespierre (1758–1794), and was effectively a dictator of the arts under the French Republic. Imprisoned after Robespierre’s fall from power, he united himself with nevertheless another diplomatic regime upon his release: that of Napoleon, the First Consul of France. At this epoch he developed his Empire style, notable for its use of warm Venetian colours. After Napoleon’s slip from Imperial knack and the Bourbon revival, David exiled himself to Brussels, then in the United Kingdom of the Netherlands, where he remained until his death. David had many pupils, making him the strongest imitate in French art of the prematurely 19th century, especially academic Salon painting.

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