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Artists Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres Photo

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres

French Painter

Movement: Neoclassicism

Born: August 29, 1780 - Montauban, France

Died: January 14, 1867 - Paris, France

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres Timeline

Quotes

"There are not two arts, there is only one: that which has as its foundation the beautiful, which is eternal and natural. Those who seek elsewhere deceive themselves, and in the most fatal manner."
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
"Let me hear no more of this absurd maxim: 'We need the new, we must follow our century, everything changes, everything is changed.' Sophistry - all of it! Does nature change, do light and air change, have the passions of the human heart changed since the time of Homer? 'We must follow our century': but if my century is wrong? Because my neighbor does evil, am I therefore obliged to do it also? Because you are ignorant of virtue as well as beauty, I must be ignorant in turn, I must imitate you!"
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
"Draw for a long time before thinking of painting. When one builds a solid foundation, one sleeps peacefully."
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
"Fine and delicate taste is the fruit of education and experience. All that we receive at birth is the faculty for creating such taste in ourselves and for cultivating it, just as we are born with a disposition for receiving the laws of society and for conforming to their usages. It is up to this point, and no further, that one may say that taste is natural."
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
"Raphael was not only the greatest of painters: he was beauty, he was good, he was everything!"
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres

"Drawing is the probity of art. To draw does not mean simply to reproduce contours; drawing does not consist merely of line: drawing is also expression, the inner form, the plane, modeling. See what remains after that!"

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres Signature

Synopsis

With a daring blend of traditional technique and experimental sensuality, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres reimagined Classical and Renaissance sources for 19th century tastes. A talented draftsman known for his serpentine line and impeccably rendered, illusionistic textures, he was at the center of a revived version of the ancient debate: is line or color the most important element of painting? Yet Ingres was not always successful; his experiments with abstracting the body and introducing more exotic and emotionally complex subjects earned harsh criticism in his early career. In truth, his work is best understood as a hybrid between Neoclassicism and Romanticism. It was only as the foil to the more dramatic Romanticism of Eugène Delacroix that Ingres came to be widely accepted as the defender of traditional painting and classicism.

Key Ideas

One of the most talented students in the studio of Jacques Louis David, Ingres found early success, winning the coveted Prix de Rome on only his second attempt. Yet while Ingres would always reflect the classical style associated with David, he complicated his master's legacy by distorting his figures and in choosing narratives that broke with the moral exemplars of his teacher.
In pursuit of more beautiful forms and harmonious line, Ingres pushed the abstraction of the body beyond the idealism of the Neoclassical. He abstracted his figures, even departing from the plausible construction of the body, to emphasize graceful contours and a pleasant visual effect. This new level of freedom would encourage other artists to take liberties with the human form, from Renoir (who was reportedly infatuated with Ingres) to the 20th century Surrealists.
Despite his transgressions, when compared to the painterly brushwork and brilliant palettes of the Romantics, such as Eugène Delacroix, Ingres was undoubtedly connected to the classical tradition and academic style. In the mid-19th century, he came to represent the Poussinistes, who believed that the cerebral quality of the drawn line was more critical to a painting, opposed to the Rubenistes, who favored the emotional impact of color. As the defender of tradition, Ingres updated Renaissance ideals for the modern era, in particular working after the model of Raphael.

Biography

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres Photo

Childhood

The eldest child of the sculptor, painter, and musician Jean-Marie-Joseph Ingres, Jean-Auguste-Dominique was born in 1780 in Montauban, a small town in southern France. Under his father's tutelage, he showed a talent for violin and a proclivity for drawing at a young age; his earliest-known signed drawing dates to 1789. His Parisian education at the Collège des Frères des Écoles Chrétiennes was cut short when the school closed during the French Revolution. In 1791, Ingres's father sent him to nearby Toulouse, enrolling him in the Académie Royale de Peinture, Sculpture et Architecture where he studied with the painters Guillaume-Joseph Roques and Jean Briant and the sculptor Jean-Pierre Vigan. He also continued his interest in music, performing second violin with the Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse from 1794 to 1796. Ingres's musical abilities would later give birth to the phrase "Ingres's violin," used to describe a prodigious, but secondary talent, overshadowed by one's primary occupation; the term would later serve as the title for a famous 1924 Surrealist photograph by Man Ray.

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Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres Biography Continues

Influences and Connections

Influences on Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Influenced by Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
Interactive chart with Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres's main influences, and the people and ideas that the artist influenced in turn.
View Influences Chart

Artists

RaphaelRaphael
Jacques Louis DavidJacques Louis David
Antoine-Jean Gros
Anne-Louis Girodet

Personal Contacts

Étienne Delécluze

Movements

NeoclassicismNeoclassicism
MannerismMannerism
RenaissanceRenaissance

Influences on Artist
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
Years Worked: 1789 - 1867
Influenced by Artist

Artists

Théodore Chassériau
Alexandre Cabanel
Edgar DegasEdgar Degas
William-Adolphe BouguereauWilliam-Adolphe Bouguereau
Pablo PicassoPablo Picasso

Personal Contacts

Movements

NeoclassicismNeoclassicism
RomanticismRomanticism
SurrealismSurrealism

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Content compiled and written by The Art Story Contributors

Edited and revised, with Synopsis and Key Ideas added by Sarah Archino

" Artist Overview and Analysis". [Internet]. . TheArtStory.org
Content compiled and written by The Art Story Contributors
Edited and revised, with Synopsis and Key Ideas added by Sarah Archino
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