Born on April 5, 1732, in Grasse, France, Jean-Honoré Nicolas Fragonard was a prominent French Rococo painter and etcher whose artistry earned him the endearing title of "The darling of the aristocrats." His journey into the world of art began during his formative years in Paris, where he abandoned a notary apprenticeship to passionately pursue painting and drawing. Guided by the renowned François Boucher, his early mentor, Fragonard's talent took shape, setting the stage for his remarkable career.
Around 1748, Fragonard commenced his artistic training under the tutelage of François Boucher, the celebrated Rococo artist of his era. Boucher recognized the young artist's extraordinary potential, significantly influencing Fragonard's style and techniques. This pivotal period marked the beginning of his artistic journey.
In 1752, at the recommendation of François Boucher, Fragonard secured a scholarship from the Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture known as the Prix de Rome. His masterpiece, "Jeroboam Sacrificing to the Golden Calf," clinched the scholarship. During his tenure at the academy, Fragonard studied the works of Roman Baroque artists and immersed himself in Dutch and Flemish masters, which left an indelible mark on his later works. As he embarked on his travels through Italy, he drew inspiration from its landscapes, nature, and ancient sites.
Returning to Paris in 1765, Fragonard's artistry evolved, earning him a place in the Royal Academy. Despite the rise of Neoclassicism during his time, Fragonard remained steadfast in his commitment to the colorful, romantic, and intimate scenes that defined his unique style. He became renowned for his picturesque landscapes, capturing the essence of gardens, terraces, and temples. Although his passing on August 22, 1806, in Paris went largely unnoticed, Fragonard's artistic legacy was eventually recognized, experiencing a reevaluation around 1850, cementing his status as the last great French Rococo artist.
Wall art prints and famous paintings by Jean Honoré Fragonard