Jean Rigaud

Jean Rigaud is a well-listed French painter. He was born on June 15, 1912 in Bordeaux, France to the well-known painter, Pierre Gaston Rigaud (1874-1949). The Rigaud's moved to the village of Guyenne in 1914, shortly after World War I began. It was during this time that Jean Rigaud received his first formal training under his father, Pierre Gaston, who was also a well-respected teacher. During this time, Jean was encouraged to develop his own personal style and talents, which utilized “pure color tones (ochres, yellows, and red cadmium) which [stood] out triumphantly against grey skies.” In 1925 Jean Rigaud was invited to exhibit his works at the Salon d’Art Ancien Espagnol in Paris, where he became a regular. Jean also continued his formal education at l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris at the Atelier André Dewambez. While at the Atelier, Jean began to develop his unique impressionistic style and techniques. He also began painting marine subjects for which he became known. However, this did not mean that he did not paint other scenes. As “a painter of instinct,” who focused on scenery, villages and abodes were not out of his realm. Examples of these works include “Tolede: Contre Jour” a 28 ¾” x 19 ¾” oil on canvas painting, “L’Isle Adam,”, and “Ker Guerin, Île d’Yeu.” However, according to a brief biography by Banks Fine Art, Rigaud “saved little room for precise depictions of the human figure in his works.” From 1938 to 1976, Rigaud participated in 53 one-man exhibitions, including at the Galerie Durand-Ruel in which he was featured every other year from 1956 to 1974. Furthermore, as a tribute, The Galerie Durand Ruel featured Rigaud’s work in their final exhibition as a “Grand Finale.” During his lifetime, Rigaud was invited to exhibit his work at all of the leading Paris Salons, which included the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Salon “Comparaisons”, Salon du Dessin et de la Peinture a l’eau and the Salon de la Marine. Rigaud also exhibited his works in Casablanca, New York, and Strasbourg. He also received a Gold Medal at The International Exhibition in Paris in 1937, the Prize of Messageries Maritimes in 1952, the Prize of Maroco in 1953, and the Prize of Charles Cottet in 1957 as well as “Painter of the French Navy” honors in 1956. Rigaud’s works are featured in many private and public collections across the world. His paintings are also permanently exhibited at the National Museum in Paris, Musée de la Marine, Musée de Niort, Musée de Tours, Musée de Poitiers, Musée Mulhouse, Musée Chalet, Musée Pontoise, and Musée Strasbourg. Rigaud is also well-listed in over a dozen prestigious books on art. Rigaud died in 1999 in Paris, and immediately after his passing, the Musee de la Marines mounted a one-man retrospective of his work, which was met with great critical acclaim. “Jean Rigaud is placed without doubt in the great tradition of realist and impressionist painter.”