Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Visiting the Cemetery of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

Recently Jean Marie and I drove to the small village where French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec is buried. Toulouse-Lautrec is one of the best known and most popular Post-Impressionist painters. Born into the aristocracy, a life-time of health problems were visible in his short stature and stilted walk, and because of his physical limitations he immersed himself into his art. Eventually Toulouse-Lautrec came to the Montmarte section of Paris where he found creative inspiration in the avant-garde bohemian lifestyle. A well-know and highly visible artist and alcoholic, he captured the Montmarte decadence with his colorful and innovative paintings of working girls: prostitutes, dancers and singers. His art posters were extremely popular during his lifetime, and are highly collectible today.

Verdelais, France, is an afternoon drive from our home, and is the small village where Toulouse-Lautrec was buried after dying from alcoholism (he's well-known for his love of absinthe) and syphilis at 36.

Notice the etching in the lower-right hand corner of the grave: here's a close-up:
Here Lies Henri de Toulouse Lautrec 1864-1901

I found this etching of the artist at work very unusual but a good way to commemorate an artist. Toulouse-Lautrec's paintings are highly sought-after and one recently sold for over $22 million. Some of my favorites include:





1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your account. We have visited the grave and were very interested to visit the church where, in spite of the denials of the staff, there is a Black Virgin cult. We even found an ancient statue hidden behind a curtain.