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Andre Derain FAUVIST Andre Derain (painted by Matisse) Henri Matisse (painted by Derain) Andre Derain  André Derain was born in Châtou, a suburb of Paris. Excellent scholar that he was, Derain had first planned to become an engineer before suddenly deciding to study art at the Académie Julian. He shared a studio with his friend Vlaminck, painted with Matisse at Collioure near Marseilles, and was a frequent visitor to the ramshackle studios on the rue Ravignan, known as the Bateau Lavoir, where his friends Braque and Picasso worked. Andre Derain  His father was a successful patissier (pastry chef) and a town councillor and Derain was given a middle-class education. He disliked school - much later, he said that 'the teachers, ushers and pupils were a far more bitter memory for me than the darkest hours of my military career.' He left 'with few regrets and the reputation of being a bad, lazy and noisy scholar', but with a prize for drawing. Andre Derain  In June 1900 he met Maurice de Vlaminck, and formed a close friendship with him. The two young artists rented a disused restaurant in Chatou which they used as a studio, and often shocked their neighbors with their antics. Meanwhile, Derain pursued his studies, copying in the Louvre and visiting exhibitions of contemporary art. He was extremely impressed by the Van Gogh retrospective at the Bernheim-Jeune Gallery, and it was here that he introduced his two friends, Vlaminck and Matisse, to one another. Andre Derain  "In the autumn of that year Derain was called up for military service. He could do little work, but carried on a lively correspondence with Vlaminck until his release in September 1904. He returned to Chatou, and it was at about this time that he got to know the poet Guillaume Apollinaire. The following year, 1905, was an important one for him. The dealer Ambroise Vollard, to whom he had been introduced by Matisse, bought the entire contents of his studio (he did the same with Vlaminck). Andre Derain  Derain exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants and sold four pictures, and then at the Salon d'Automne where he, Matisse, Vlaminck and others were hung together as a group, in a space which was promptly dubbed the 'Cage aux Fauves' ('Cage of Wild Beasts') by a facetious critic, and Fauvism was officially born. Andre Derain  As a Fauve Derain was principally concerned with line and color and enjoyed squeezing tubes of bright color on his canvas, particularly pinks, blues, and violets. In and around 1908, Derain turned to the study of form and structure, and experimented with Cubism, Impressionism, and the styles of Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Cezanne, in an effort to find a style that pleased him. Andre Derain  An early interest in the Renaissance masters led him to a further study of paintings of the past and he went as far back as the Italian primitives and the Gothic masters. During his years of study he worked as a wood-engraver and illustrated many famous books, like Rabelais' "Pantagruel", a work indicative of his sensitivity to and understanding of the past. He also executed a great many sets and costumes for the Ballet Russe. Andre Derain  In the later years of his career, after 1920, he painted brilliant still lives, classical landscapes, and some of the finest portraits of his day, although none of these were ever exhibited. Derain was a strange, moody, highly intellectual man who disliked the painting produced during his own lifetime to the extent that he retired to the country to live in almost complete solitude and seemed almost determined to be forgotten. Andre Derain  Early in 1954, when Derain showed symptoms of eye trouble and mental incapacity, he was treated at a clinic near Paris until he became well enough to return home. Shortly thereafter he was hit by a car on his way home from a nearby garage. Derain died a few weeks later from shock. Boats in the Harbor 1905 Boats in the Harbor 1905 "Boats" was painted during Derain's earlier career and represents the port town of Collioure in southern France where the Fauve French artists would meet. St. Paul's Cathedral (1906) St. Paul’s Cathedral 1906  After the great financial success of Claude Monet's views of the Thames River, André Derain's dealer, Ambroise Vollard, convinced him to paint London, too. During two trips to England in 1905 and 1906, Derain made thirty views of the city. This one features Sir Christopher Wren's famous 17th-century cathedral. A Fauve painter, Derain has distilled and expressed his emotions about the subject using intensified colors and a simplified design. Charing Cross Bridge Charing Cross Bridge 1906  Derain went twice to London where he produced some thirty paintings. Charing Cross Bridge is recognised as one of the finest Fauvist compositions. The street and buildings are painted in large flat tones while the changing sky and water are treated in small, fragmented touches reminiscent of the Neo- impressionist style. The forms of the vehicles are distorted, their silhouettes echoing the curb of the Victoria embankment to give a sensation of speed.