Pierre-Joseph Redouté

Pierre-Joseph Redouté (July 10, 1759 - June 20, 1840), was a Belgian painter and botanist, known for his paintings of the roses, lilies and other flowers at Malmaison. Redouté was born in Saint-Hubert, Luxembourg, which is now part of Belgium. He was an official court artist of Queen Marie Antoinette, and he continued painting through the French Revolution and Reign of Terror. Redouté survived the turbulent political upheaval to gain international recognition for his precise renderings of plants which remain as fresh in the early 21st century as when first painted.

Paris was the cultural and scientific center of Europe during an outstanding period (1798 - 1837) in the illustration of plants, one noted for the publication of several folio books with colored plates. Redouté contributed over 2100 published plates depicting over 1800 different species, many never rendered before.

Although he was relatively lacking in formal education, both Redouté's father and grandfather were painters. He left home at the age of 13 to earn his living as an itinerant Belgian painter, doing interior decoration, portraits and religious commissions. Enthusiastically, Redouté became an heir to the tradition of the Flemish and Dutch flower painters Brueghel, Ruysch, van Huysum and de Heem.

Paris

In 1782 Redouté joined his elder brother, Antoine Ferdinand, an interior decorator and scenery designer in Paris. Cheveau, a Parisian dealer, brought the young artist to the attention of the botanical artist Gerard van Spaendonck at the Jardin du Roi, which became the Jardin des Plantes of the Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle after the French Revolution. There he met the botanist and book lover Charles Louis L'Héritier de Brutelle. van Spaendonck became Redouté's teacher, L'Heritier his patron [ [http://members.aol.com/arbexhibit/redout1.htm Stanley Johnston, "Gerard von Spaendonck and Pierre Joseph Redouté", The Holden Arboretum. On line.] ] who taught him to dissect flowers and portray their diagnostic characteristics. L'Heritier also introduced Redouté to members of the court of Versailles. In 1786 Redouté began work at the Museum d'Histoire Naturelle cataloging the collections of flora and fauna and participating in botanical expeditions, notably Bonaparte's Egyptian expedition [ [http://www-scd-ulp.u-strasbg.fr/wiki/doku.php/auteur:Redout%C3%A9%2C%20Pierre-Joseph "Redoute, Pierre-Joseph", SCD, Universities of Strasbourg.] ] .

Over his long career, Redouté painted the gardens at the Petite Trianon of Marie Antoinette as her official court artist. During the revolution and Reign of Terror, he was appointed to document gardens which became national property. However, during the patronage of the generous Empress Josephine, Redouté's career flourished and he produced his most sumptuous books portraying plants from places as distant as Japan, South Africa and Australia as well as Europe and America.

After Josephine's death, Redouté's fortunes fell until he was appointed as a master of design for the Museum d'Histoire Naturelle in 1822. He became a Chevalier of the Légion d'honneur in 1825. Although particularly renowned for his botanical exploration of roses and lilies, he thereafter produced paintings purely for aesthetic value including those of the celebrated "Choix des plus belles Fleurs" [Pierre-Joseph Redouté, Sandra Raphael (Narrator), Ian Jackson (Translator)"Choix Des Plus Belles Fleurs," Paris, privately printed, 1827–1833; on CD, California Academy of Sciences / Octavo (2004) ISBN 1-59110-053-4] .

Works

* "Geraniologia," typis Petri-Francisci Didot 1787-8; [http://num-scd-ulp.u-strasbg.fr:8080/83/ On line.]
* "Les Liliacées," 8 vols. (1802); Taschen America (2000) ISBN 3-8228-6407-2 ; [http://num-scd-ulp.u-strasbg.fr:8080/2/ SCD, University of Strasbourg. (1802-1816) On line.]
* "Les Roses," 3 vols. (1817-1824); French & European Pubns (1954) ISBN 0-320-05904-9 ; Pierre-Joseph Redoute, Sandra Raphael (Narrator}, Ian Jackson (Translator), CD-ROM Octavo (2002) ISBN 1-891788-28-0; [http://digitalgallery.nypl.org/nypldigital/dgkeysearchresult.cfm?parent_id=448333&word= NYPL On Line.] or [http://www.rarebookroom.org/Control/rdtrse/index.html Rare Book Room] (1817-1824 from Library of Congress) or [http://www.rarebookroom.org/Control/redros/index.html Rare Book Room] (1817 from The Warnock Library)
* "Plantes grasses," 2 vols., with Augustin Pyramus Candolle, frères Levrault (1790); [http://num-scd-ulp.u-strasbg.fr:8080/23/ SCD, University of Strasbourg. On line.]
* "Choix Des Plus Belles Fleurs," Paris, privately printed, 1827–1833; Pierre-Joseph Redouté, Sandra Raphael (Narrator), Ian Jackson (Translator), CD-ROM, California Academy of Sciences / Octavo (2004) ISBN 1-59110-053-4; [http://www.rarebookroom.org/Control/redcho/index.html Rare Book Room On Line.]

References

Literature

* Wilfrid Blunt and William T. Stearn, "The Age of Redouté", "The Art of Botanical Illustration," pp. 173-183. London, Collins (1950) ISBN 0-486-27265-6
* Alain Dierkens, Andre Lawalree, and Jean-Marie Duvosquel, "Pierre-Joseph Redoute, 1759-1840: La Famille, L'uvre," Centre Pierre-Joseph Redoute (Saint-Hubert, Belgium) (1996) ISBN 2-87193-238-7

External links

* [http://www.globalgallery.com/artist.bio.asp?nm=pierre+joseph+redoute "Pierre Joseph Redouté" biography at globalgallery.com.]
* [http://library.cincymuseum.org/bot/redoute.htm "Pierre-Joseph Redouté, 1759-1840", "From Seed to Flower: Selected Books from the Cornelius J. Hauck Botanical Collection," Cincinnati Museum.]

Centre Redouté

Centre Pierre-Joseph Redouté
Rue Redouté 11
6870 SAINT-HUBERT, BELGIQUE


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