UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Edmond Francois Aman-Jean, 1860-1935

Nationality: French
Date of Birth: 1860
Place of Birth: Chevry-Cossigny
Date of Death: 1935
Place of Death: Paris

Identity:

Edmond Francois Aman-Jean was a painter, pastellist, engraver and lithographer.

Life:

Aman-Jean studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris under Henri Lehmann from 1880. There he met Georges Seurat with whom he came to share a studio. He also studied under Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, and worked as his assistant on the Sacred Grove (1884; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lyon). In 1886 he was awarded a scholarship to study in Rome. On his return to Paris he was accepted into the circle of Symbolist poets including Stéphane Mallarmé, Paul Verlaine and Philippe-Auguste Villiers de l’Isle Adam.

Aman-Jean specialized in pictures of decorative young women in oil, pastel and lithography, e.g.Girl with Peacock (1895, oil; Muséé des Arts Décoratifs, Paris). The critic Camille Mauclair linked his work with that of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in Britain. His later work was heavily influenced by Pierre Bonnard. He was a regular exhibitor at the Salon de la Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, on whose jury he served. He also exhibited at the Salons de la Rose+Croix in 1892 and 1893. He designed the poster for the latter.

The Pennells record that in 1893 Aman-Jean painted his wife with her hair low down on each side of her face, and that both the painting and Aman-Jean's wife, who appeared with this hair style at the Vernissage in this year, caused a huge sensation and started a new trend in Paris. JW was friendly with Aman-Jean at this time. He invited him to contribute to the first exhibition of the International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers which was held in May 1898 at the Skating Rink in Knightsbridge, London.

Bibliography:

Pennell, Elizabeth Robins, and Joseph Pennell, The Life of James McNeill Whistler, 2 vols, London and Philadelphia, 1908; Carter, D., Edmond Aman-Jean: A Study of his Life and Works, Cincinnati, 1974; Edmond Aman-Jean, exhibition catalogue, Ferrers Gallery, London, 1975; Costa, Vanina, 'Edmond Aman-Jean', The Grove Dictionary of Art Online, ed. L. Macy, http://www.groveart.com 9accessed 11 July 2002).