|Antoine Blanchard (French, 1910-1988) was born in France in a small village near the banks of the Loire. He displayed an artistic flair early in life – in an effort to promote this talent his parents sent him to Blois for drawing lessons. He continued his training in Rennes at l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts.
By 1932 he left Rennes and traveled to Paris to study. He enrolled at l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris and after a few years he entered the competition for the Prix de Rome. It was also at this time that Antoine Blanchard discovered a particular interest in painting scenes of the Parisian streets, the canvases which have merited his place in the affections of American and Canadian collectors, as well as those of England, Germany, and his native France. Imaginative artist, refined colorist in love with light, Antoine Blanchard possessed a remarkable skill for creating the atmosphere of a street scene. Though he is considered a contemporary artist, he painted the Paris of 1900 and through his paintings
revived a period full of charm. His mastery of drawing resulted in compositions in which the architecture of the buildings is always faultless. He filled the streets and boulevard with human figures clad in the mode of 1900 and painted with a fine and accurate
brush. For Blanchard, Paris was an inexhaustible subject. The flower carts in the spring, the book stalls along the Seine, the Champs-Elysees filled with bustling crowds after a rain, street cafes with their brilliant glow of lights reflected in the street and
silhouetting passerby, the famous and historic buildings -- all furnished subjects for his brush. He employed rich color in muted resonance, brilliantly accented with touches of almost electric color in the skies or on the streets themselves. Blanchard was both
artist and poet in developing his beautiful studies of Paris.
His father had a successful business and upon his death, Antoine was compelled to return to his hometown and run the family business – giving him little time to paint. It wasn’t till after World War II that he retired from the business and returned to his first love – painting. He moved his family to Paris and began to paint the “City of Lights”.
Like his contemporary, Edouard Cortes, he devoted his artistic career to the depiction of Paris through all its daily and seasonal changes. Whether it was l’Arc de Triomphe, la Madeleine, Café de la Paix, Notre Dame or the dozens of other historical monuments and buildings of Paris, his focus was on the daily life of Paris at the turn of the century. His work became highly sought after and collectors from around the world vied to acquired his new works. Today his is considered one of the leading exponents of the School of Paris painters.