Jules Joseph Lefebvre

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Jules Joseph Lefebvre.
Jules Lefebvre in his studio.

Jules Joseph Lefebvre (French: [ʒyl ʒɔzɛf ləfɛːvʁ]) (14 March 1834 – 24 February 1912) was a French figure painter, educator and theorist.

Early life[edit]

Lefebvre was born in Tournan-en-Brie, Seine-et-Marne, on 14 March 1834.[1] He entered the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in 1852 and was a pupil of Léon Cogniet.


He won the prestigious Prix de Rome in 1861. Between 1855 and 1898, he exhibited 72 portraits in the Paris Salon. In 1891, he became a member of the French Académie des Beaux-Arts.

He was an instructor at the Académie Julian in Paris. Lefebvre is chiefly important as an excellent and sympathetic teacher who numbered many Americans among his 1500 or more pupils. Among his famous students were Fernand Khnopff, Kenyon Cox,[2] Félix Vallotton, Ernst Friedrich von Liphart,[3] Georges Rochegrosse, the Scottish-born landscape painter William Hart, Walter Lofthouse Dean, and Edmund C. Tarbell, who became an American Impressionist painter.[4]

Many of his paintings are single figures of beautiful women. Among his best portraits were those of M. L. Reynaud and the Prince Imperial (1874).[2]

Lefebvre died in Paris on 24 February 1912.[1]

Significant milestones[edit]

Selected works[edit]

Jules Lefebvre: Vittoria Colonna, (1861)
Clémence Isaure
Graziella, 1878 (depicting the protagonist of Alphonse de Lamartine's novel Graziella)

Undated works[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Art Renewal Center Museum™ Artist Information for Jules Joseph Lefebvre". Art Renewal Center. 
  2. ^ a b Oxford Art Online, "Lefebvre, Jules"
  3. ^ http://www.rusartnet.com/biographies/russian-artists/19th-century/late-19th-century/baron-ernst-friedrich-von-liphart
  4. ^ Kathleen Luhrs American Paintings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art 1980 "...... on to Paris and studied for a year at the Académie Julian under Gustave Boulanger and Jules Lefebvre."

External links[edit]