- Also known as
Charles Le Brun
primary name: Le Brun, Charles
other name: Lebrun, Charles
- individual; painter/draughtsman; French; Male
- Life dates
- Painter; student of François Perrier c.1632, then in Vouet's studio c.1633/34; with Poussin (q.v.) in Italy 1642-45. When he returned to France, his patron, Chancellor Séguier (q.v.) helped him obtain commissions from wealthy amateurs and build his reputation. In 1658, Le Brun was entrusted with the decoration of Vaux-le-Vicomte by Fouquet (q.v.); after the latter's disgrace in 1661, Le Brun began working for Louis XIV (q.v.), who named him Premier peintre (1662), and who commissioned him with various works, most famously the decoration of Versailles (Galerie des Glaces, 1679-84). Le Brun was also instrumental in the reorganization of the Académie de Peinture et de Sculpture (1663), of which he became director, and which he used to impose official standards on French art and lay the basis of academicism (see for instance quarrel of drawing over colour). His fortune waned when Jean Baptiste Colbert (q.v.), who had always supported him, died (1683) and was replaced by Louvois (q.v.).
- D.Wildenstein, GBA, 66 (1965) pp.1-58 (catalogue of XVIIc engravings after Lebrun)RD I p.163 (7 nos) for etchings by him
J. Montagu, 'The expression of the passions: the origin and influence of Charles Le Brun's "Conférence sur l'expression générale et particulière"', (New Haven & London: Yale University Press, 1994)
Peter Fuhring, 'The market for prints under Louis XIV - Charles Le Brun', PQ XIX 2002, pp.3-11.
Louis Marchesano & Christian Michel, 'Printing the Grand Manner', Getty Institute 2010