Gustave Doré

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Gustave Doré

Gustave Doré ranks among one of the most influential, celebrated and highly acclaimed artists of the 19th century.

Born is Strasbourg, and from a very young age, Gustave Doré  proved himself a prodigy, brimming with naked and natural talent. Most of his skill and education was self-learnt, he immersed himself in artistic passions and influences and perfected his skill by dedicated and diligent practice. In 1846, he arrived in Paris and at a very young age, he took the Parisian artistic circles by storm with his abundant talent and artistic endeavors.

In 1847, he demonstrated unparalleled skill and talents as a draftsman, when he launched his first lithographic album in Paris. For the next three years, Doré worked as a caricaturist for the editor Charles Philiphon. His work began to garner immense fame and acclaim, and he established a firm influence and stature as a prominent illustrator in 1854, with the publication of the first edition of Oeuvres de Rabelais and later, the Histoire pittoresque, dramatique et caricaturale de la Sainte Russie.

Soon, Doré began creating iconic and remarkably impressive artwork, magnificent sculptures, enigmatic engravings, exuberant expressions and numerous pieces of artwork using water colors. In 1848, he began producing weekly lithographic caricatures for the famous Journal pour Rire, he was a regular contributor to the Journal till 1851.

From 1850, Doré began showcasing his paintings at the Salon among the works of other prominent and influential artists, and from 1870, he also began contributing his sculptures to the Salon. His artistic ambition and talent as an illustration was unparalleled, and his imagination that gave birth to enticingly captivating surreal and astoundingly utopian style.

His artwork and dreamlike illustrations garnered him immense fame, appraise and fan following. His work was applauded and acclaimed by several awards and accolades, including the Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur in 1861, and in 1878, he received the Officier de la Légion d’honneur.

He worked with some of the most influential and prominent publishers in Paris and London. Since 1856, he became a regular visitor to London in pursuit of his artistic and professional endeavors. However, he never liked the city much and hence, he did not learn English or buy himself a house in London while working as a regular contributor to the influential London News from 1868 to 1879. He conducted extensive travels throughout Europe, but his permanent residence always remained Paris.

Gustave Doré is remembered and celebrated for his widely famous and critically acclaimed illustrations for several lithographic albums. He garnered immense fame and praise for his wooden engraved book illustrations, he employed a workforce of over 40 woodcutters who assisted him in producing more than 90 wood-engraved illustrated books. Some of his finest works are the editions of “Oeuvres de Rabelais”, “Les Contes drolatiques de Balzac”, the “Large folio Bible”, and the “Inferno of Dante”.

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