Monday, September 5, 2011

The unspoiled Balearics: Francisque de Saint-Etienne

Francisque de Saint-Étienne was born in Montpellier in 1824. A landscape painter and etcher, Saint-Étienne was a pupil of Jules Laurens. He exhibited at the Salon de Paris from 1857-1863, also exhibiting four landscape etchings at the International Exhibition in London in 1862. He also published etchings with Cadart's Société des Aquafortistes. My etching dates from 1860, and is I think fairly representative of his work. It shows the untamed wildness of the Balearic island of Formentera, before any thought of today's tourism.

Francisque de Saint-Étienne, Formentera
Etching, 1860

In 1863 Francisque de Saint-Étienne returned to Montpellier from Paris, and ceased to send work for exhibition in the capital, exhibiting only in the regional exhibitions of the Société artistique de l'Hérault. His name is sometimes spelled Francisc de Saint-Étienne; his true name was Louis Francisc Hippolyte Bessodes de Roquefeuille. He died in Montpellier in 1885.

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