Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, French postimpressionist painter, lithographer, and illustrator, who documented the bohemian nightlife of late-19th-century Paris.
Toulouse-Lautrec was born in Albi into one of the oldest aristocratic families. Henri was weak and often sick. By the time he was 10 he had begun to draw and paint. At 12 young Toulouse-Lautrec broke his left leg and at 14 his right leg. The bones failed to heal properly, and his legs stopped growing. He reached young adulthood with a body trunk of normal size but with abnormally short legs. During his convalescence, his mother encouraged him to paint. He subsequently studied with French academic painters L. J. F. Bonnat and Fernand Cormon.
He stayed in the Montmartre section of Paris, the center of the cabaret entertainment and bohemian life that he loved to paint. Circuses, dance halls, nightclubs, racetracks and parisian brothels—all these spectacles were set down on canvas or made into lithographs. Toulouse-Lautrec was very much a part of all this activity. He would sit at a crowded nightclub table, laughing and drinking, and at the same time he would make swift sketches.
Toulouse-Lautrec preserved his impressions of these places and their celebrities in portraits and sketches of striking originality and power. Outstanding examples are La Goulou Entering the Moulin Rouge (1892, Musée Toulouse-Lautrec, Albi), Jane Avril Entering the Moulin Rouge (1892, Courtauld Gallery, London), and Au salon de la rue des Moulins (1894, Musée Toulouse-Lautrec).
Toulouse-Lautrec, many of whose works are in the museum that bears his name in Albi, was a prolific creator. His oeuvre includes great numbers of paintings, drawings, etchings, lithographs, and posters, as well as illustrations for various contemporary newspapers. He incorporated into his own highly individual method elements of the styles of various contemporary artists, especially French painters Edgar Degas and Paul Gauguin. Japanese art, then coming into vogue in Paris, influenced his use of sharp delineation, asymmetric composition, oblique angles, and flat areas of color. His work inspired van Gogh, Georges Seurat, and Georges Rouault.
His alcoholic dissipation, however, eventually brought on a paralytic stroke, to which he succumbed at Malromé, one of his family's estates. Since then his paintings and posters--particularly the 'Moulin Rouge' group—have been in great demand and bring high prices at auctions and art sales.
Niue is an island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean. It is commonly known as the "Rock of Polynesia". Natives of the island call it "the Rock".
Though self governing, Niue is in free association with New Zealand, and thus lacks full sovereignty. Queen Elizabeth II is also Niue's head of state. Most diplomatic relations are conducted by New Zealand on Niue's behalf.
Niue is 2,400 kilometres northeast of New Zealand in a triangle between Tonga, Samoa, and the Cook Islands. The people are predominantly Polynesian.