Jean-Siméon Chardin

Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin

1699 (Paris) – 1779 (Paris)

The substantially self-taught Chardin is particularly known for his acutely-observed still lives and for his atmospheric use of light and shade — both strongly influenced by Dutch rather than French painting. Diderot met him through his official role as an academician, and became both a friend and a perceptive champion of his work (he admiringly described him as ‘grand magicien’ and commented that no-one ever watched him painting). Fragonard was briefly apprenticed to him. Boucher, Chardin’s close contemporary (and artistic opposite) was his neighbour in the Louvre apartments provided by the king.