20 Facts About Odilon Redon


Early in his career, both before and after fighting in the Franco-Prussian War, Redon worked almost exclusively in charcoal and lithography, works known as his noirs.


Odilon Redon gained recognition after his drawings were mentioned in the 1884 novel A rebours by Joris-Karl Huysmans.


Odilon Redon developed a keen interest in Hindu and Buddhist religion and culture, which increasingly showed in his work.


Odilon Redon is perhaps best known today for the dreamlike paintings created in the first decade of the 20th century, which were inspired by Japanese art and leaned toward abstraction.


Odilon Redon was born in Bordeaux, Aquitaine, to a prosperous family.


Odilon Redon's father made his fortune in the slave trade in Louisiana in the 1830s.


Odilon Redon was conceived in New Orleans and the couple made the transatlantic journey back to France while his mother Marie Guerin, a French Creole woman, was pregnant with his brother Gaston.


The young Bertrand Redon acquired the nickname "Odilon" from his mother's first name, Odile.


Odilon Redon started drawing as a child; at the age of ten, he was awarded a drawing prize at school.


Odilon Redon began the formal study of drawing at fifteen but, at his father's insistence, he changed to architecture.


Odilon Redon called his visionary works, conceived in shades of black, his noirs.


Still, Odilon Redon remained relatively unknown until the appearance in 1884 of a cult novel by Joris-Karl Huysmans titled A rebours.


In 1886, Odilon Redon exhibited his work with the Impressionists in their the last exhibition.


Odilon Redon had a keen interest in Hindu and Buddhist religion and culture.


Odilon Redon's popularity increased when a catalogue of etchings and lithographs was published by Andre Mellerio in 1913; that same year, he was given the largest single representation at the groundbreaking US International Exhibition of Modern Art, in New York City, Chicago and Boston.


At 40, Odilon Redon married Camille Falte, a young Creole from Ile Bourbon.


In 2005, the Museum of Modern Art launched an exhibition entitled "Beyond The Visible", a comprehensive overview of Odilon Redon's work showcasing more than 100 paintings, drawings, prints and books from The Ian Woodner Family Collection.


Odilon Redon's work represents an exploration of his internal feelings and psyche.


Odilon Redon wanted to place "the logic of the visible at the service of the invisible".


Odilon Redon's drawings are characterized as mysterious and evocative by Joris-Karl Huysmans in the following passage from the novel A rebours :.