“Everyone knows that actually I stole from my master.” This statement from Gauguin seems to contradict the position Emile Bernard holds in art history as one of the lesser masters. But, with supporting evidence, the authors of this work would like to reinstate Bernard as one of the true great lights of modern painting. With his colleagues from the Pont-Aven group, he pioneered a style of painting which combined classicism, impressionism and pointillism using symbolic themes. Notably, his introduction of Cloissonism in painting would become a hallmark of Gauguin’s work.
Bernard expanded his field of production beyond painting. He engraved, designed tapestry, sculpted, sculpted furniture, and he wrote poems, novels and numerous texts that explained and argued his art theories.
This book, comprised of roughly 1900 illustrations, is both a catalogue raisonné and a complete record of the life and work of Émile Bernard. It follows, step by step, his artistic explorations and development, and contributes to the better understanding of his essential role amongst the great artists of his time (end of 19th– early 20th), including Cézanne (one of the first to recognize his value), Gauguin, Van Gogh, les Nabis, and other masters of postimpressionism.