Portrait of Adolphe-William Bouguereau

Adolphe-William Bouguereau Painting Reproductions 8 of 11

1825-1905

French Academic Classicism Painter

Adolphe-William Bouguereau (1825-1905) was a French academic painter. He was a traditionalist whose polished and idealized paintings emphasized mythological and religious subjects. Bouguereau was a highly successful artist during his lifetime, but his work fell out of favor with the rise of modern art. In recent decades, there has been a revival of interest in his paintings.

Adolphe-William Bouguereau was born on November 30, 1825, in La Rochelle, France. He showed an early talent for drawing and was sent to study at the École des Beaux-Arts in Bordeaux. In 1846, Bouguereau won the Prix de Rome, a prestigious scholarship that allowed him to study classical art in Rome. During his four years in Italy, Bouguereau studied Renaissance masters like Raphael and Michelangelo, who would greatly influence his own style.

After returning to France, Bouguereau established himself as a history and religious painter. He depicted scenes from ancient mythology, the Bible, and the lives of the saints. His paintings were praised for their skillful draftsmanship, use of rich colors, and idealized beauty. Bouguereau employed a meticulous painting technique and often made dozens of preparatory sketches for a single work.

In 1850, Bouguereau was awarded the Legion of Honor, the highest decoration in France. He gained widespread fame and was in high demand as a portraitist for aristocrats and the bourgeoisie. Bouguereau's paintings were very popular at the annual Paris Salon, and he served as an official judge at the Salon for decades.

Bouguereau's style embodied the French Academy's emphasis on technical skill, classical subjects, and ideal beauty. His paintings were praised for their polished finish and photographic realism. However, with the rise of modern art in the late 19th century, Bouguereau's traditional style fell out of favor. Younger avant-garde artists criticized his work as superficial, sentimental, and detached from contemporary life.

Despite the criticism, Bouguereau remained popular with collectors and the public until his death. He continued exhibiting at the Salon until 1904. Bouguereau passed away on August 19, 1905, at the age of 79, in his hometown of La Rochelle, France.

For most of the 20th century, Bouguereau's work was dismissed by art historians and critics. However, since the 1980s, there has been a revival of interest in his paintings. Bouguereau is now recognized as a master of the academic style, with a technical virtuosity and idealized sensuality that appeals to modern audiences. His works are held in major museums around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Musée d'Orsay, and the J. Paul Getty Museum.

Bouguereau's work is now seen as a pinnacle of skill and craftsmanship, rather than mere sentimentality. His paintings are admired for their visual splendor and idealization of the human form. His sensual and decorative style appeals to modern sensibilities more attuned to sexuality and the body. Paintings like The Birth of Venus have become popular and recognizable.

Bouguereau's work represents an important aspect of 19th-century French painting that was long overlooked. His immense popularity and mastery of the Salon style are now recognized as significant. Though the Impressionists rebelled against his style, Bouguereau was an inspiration for later painters like Salvador Dalí, who praised his technical skill and "virtuosity." Bouguereau's work has parallels with 20th-century Surrealism.

Bouguereau's paintings have become highly sought after in the art market, with major works selling for millions of dollars. His revival is linked to a renewed interest in academic and figurative painting among collectors.

Bouguereau has emerged from obscurity to regain his place as a pivotal figure in 19th-century art. His masterful paintings are once again admired for their visual splendor, technical brilliance, and embodiment of traditional values. Bouguereau's revival reflects a desire to reexamine art history and a newfound appreciation for the academic style he helped define.

241 Bouguereau Paintings

Head of a Young Girl, 1898 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Head of a Young Girl 1898

Oil Painting
$1464
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5501
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

The Curtsey, 1898 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Curtsey 1898

Oil Painting
$1850
SKU: BWA-5502
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Self Portrait Presented to M. Sage, 1886 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Self Portrait Presented to M. Sage 1886

Oil Painting
$1491
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5503
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Child Braiding a Crown, 1874 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Child Braiding a Crown 1874

Oil Painting
$2015
SKU: BWA-5504
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 86.3 x 55.7 cm
Private Collection

Mignon, 1869 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Mignon 1869

Oil Painting
$1781
SKU: BWA-5505
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

The Countess de Montholon, 1864 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Countess de Montholon 1864

Oil Painting
$1910
SKU: BWA-5506
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

The Palm Leaf, 1894 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Palm Leaf 1894

Oil Painting
$1763
SKU: BWA-5507
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

The Crossing of the Ford, 1869 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Crossing of the Ford 1869

Oil Painting
$1999
SKU: BWA-5508
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Sketch of a Young Woman, n.d. by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Sketch of a Young Woman n.d.

Oil Painting
$1379
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5509
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 45.7 x 38 cm
Collection of Fred and Sherry Ross, New Jersey, USA

The Mischievous One, 1895 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Mischievous One 1895

Oil Painting
$1719
SKU: BWA-5510
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Portrait of a Young Girl, 1890 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Portrait of a Young Girl 1890

Oil Painting
$1441
SKU: BWA-5511
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Young Girl Crocheting, 1889 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Young Girl Crocheting 1889

Oil Painting
$914
SKU: BWA-5512
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Chilly Girl (La frileuse), 1879 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Chilly Girl (La frileuse) 1879

Oil Painting
$1827
SKU: BWA-5513
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Idylle, 1851 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Idylle 1851

Oil Painting
$1741
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5514
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

The Earrings (Boucles D'Oreilles), 1891 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Earrings (Boucles D'Oreilles) 1891

Oil Painting
$1886
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5515
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Woman with Seashell, 1885 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Woman with Seashell 1885

Oil Painting
$1910
SKU: BWA-5516
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Woman of Cervara and Her Child, 1861 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Woman of Cervara and Her Child 1861

Oil Painting
$2061
SKU: BWA-5517
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

Wounded Eros, 1857 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Wounded Eros 1857

Oil Painting
$1781
SKU: BWA-5518
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: unknown
Private Collection

A Young Girl, 1886 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

A Young Girl 1886

Oil Painting
$1379
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-5519
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 35.6 x 27.3 cm
Private Collection

Pifferaro, 1874 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Pifferaro 1874

Oil Painting
$2339
Canvas Print
$68.43
SKU: BWA-6284
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 101.6 x 76.2 cm
Private Collection

Study of a Seated Veiled Female Figure, n.d. by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Study of a Seated Veiled Female Figure n.d.

Paper Art Print
$47.60
SKU: BWA-6285
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 32.4 x 25 cm
Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minnesota, USA

Loves Resistance, 1885 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Loves Resistance 1885

Paper Art Print
$47.60
SKU: BWA-6286
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 34.5 x 23.5 cm
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, California, USA

Portrait of Madame Olry-Roederer, 1900 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

Portrait of Madame Olry-Roederer 1900

Oil Painting
$2273
Canvas Print
$51.93
SKU: BWA-6287
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 193 x 108 cm
Private Collection

The Song of the Nightingale, 1895 by Bouguereau | Painting Reproduction

The Song of the Nightingale 1895

Oil Painting
$1956
Canvas Print
$49.98
SKU: BWA-6288
Adolphe-William Bouguereau
Original Size: 139.7 x 89 cm
Dayton Art Institute, Ohio, USA

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