Eugene Delacroix, born on April 26, 1798, in Charenton-Saint-Maurice, France. The greatest French romantic painter, whose use of color was influential in the development of both Impressionist and Postimpressionist painters. His inspiration came chiefly from historical or contemporary events and literature.
He is numbered among the greatest and most influential of French painters. He is most often classified as an artist of the Romantic school. His remarkable use of color was later to influence impressionist painters and even modern artists such as Pablo Picasso.
In 1815 he became the pupil of the French painter Pierre-Narcisse Guerin and began a career that would produce more than 850 paintings and great numbers of drawings, murals, and other works. In 1822 Delacroix submitted his first picture to the important Paris Salon exhibition: Dante and Virgil in Hell. A technique used in this work--many unblended colors forming what at a distance looks like a unified whole--would later be used by the impressionists.
His next Salon entry was in 1824: Massacre at Chios. With great vividness of color and strong emotion it pictured an incident in which 20,000 Greeks were killed by Turks on the island of Chios.
The French revolution of 1830 inspired the famous Liberty Guiding the People, which was the last of Delacroix's paintings that truly embodied the romantic ideal. He found new inspiration on a trip to Morocco in 1832. The ancient, proud, and exotic culture moved him to write "I am quite overwhelmed by what I have seen."
In 1833 Delacroix painted a group of murals for the king's chamber at the Palais Bourbon. He continued doing this type of painting, including panels for the Louvre and for the Museum of History at Versailles, until 1861. Much of the architectural painting involved long hours on uncomfortable scaffolding in drafty...