Utrillo, Maurice

born Dec. 25, 1883, Paris, Fr.
died Nov. 5, 1955, Le Vésinet

French painter.

When he became an alcoholic in his teens, his mother, the painter and model Suzanne Valadon, encouraged him to take up painting as therapy; it soon became his obsession. He had no formal artistic training and was interested primarily in reproducing what he saw as faithfully as possible. Most of his compositions depict the old, deteriorating houses and streets of the Montmartre district of Paris. His best work is that of his "white period" (с 1908–14), so called for his lavish use of zinc white in heavy layers to build up aging, cracked walls.

Impasse Cottin, oil on cardboard by Maurice Utrillo, c. 1910; in the National Museum of ...

© 1993 ARS N.Y./SPADEM; photograph, Scala/Art Resource, New York

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▪ French artist
born December 26, 1883, Paris, France
died November 5, 1955, Le Vésinet

      French painter who was noted for his depictions of the houses and streets of the Montmartre district of Paris.

      Born out of wedlock, Utrillo was the son of the model and artist Suzanne Valadon (Valadon, Suzanne). His father was not known, and he was given his name by a Spanish art critic, Miguel Utrillo. He had no instruction as an artist apart from that given by his mother, who herself was untutored. When, as an adolescent, he became an alcoholic, his mother encouraged him to take up painting as therapy. Despite his frequent relapses into alcoholism, painting became Utrillo's obsession.

      Shy and withdrawn, Utrillo painted very few portraits. He usually portrayed—often using picture postcards as sources—the deteriorating houses and streets of Montmartre, its old windmills, and its cafés and places of amusement. He was also inspired by trips to Brittany and Corsica.

 Utrillo's most highly regarded work is that of his “white period” (c. 1909–14), so called because of his lavish use of zinc white, which he sometimes mixed with plaster. In heavy, rich pigment, he depicted aging, cracked walls, sometimes covered in inscriptions. These works brought him fame and financial success. In 1924, to keep her son permanently away from the bars of Montmartre, Valadon moved with him to a château near Lyon, France.

      Utrillo was made a chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 1928. In 1935 he married Lucie Pauwels, a widow who was herself an amateur painter, and they settled in Le Vésinet, a fashionable suburb of Paris. In his later years, his painting declined sharply in originality and vigour. Utrillo was notably prolific; he produced thousands of oil paintings. First-rate paintings by Utrillo are few, but critics have linked him as a landscapist with such 18th- and 19th-century masters as Francesco Guardi (Guardi, Francesco), Hubert Robert (Robert, Hubert), and Camille Corot (Corot, Camille). Unfortunately, countless crude forgeries have interfered with his good reputation.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Utrillo, Maurice — (1883 1955)    painter    Born in Paris, Maurice utrillo was the son of suzanne valadon (who was his only art teacher) and probably an individual, known as Boissy, but was acknowledged by the Catalan critic Miguel utrillo in 1897. Becoming an… …   France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present

  • Utrillo,Maurice — U·tril·lo (yo͞o trĭlʹō, ü trē ōʹ), Maurice. 1883 1955. French painter known especially for his street scenes of Paris. * * * …   Universalium

  • Utrillo, Maurice — ► (1883 1955) Pintor francés. Su obra muestra una original concepción del espacio con perspectivas ascendentes y descendentes. Expresa la tristeza de las casas pobres y la soledad de las calles: Casa de las afueras en París, Vista de Montmartre.… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Utrillo, Maurice —  (1883–1955) French artist …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Utrillo — Utrillo, Maurice …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Maurice Utrillo — La Rue Norvins à Montmartre, c. 1910 Birth name Maurice Valadon …   Wikipedia

  • Utrillo — Maurice Utrillo (* 26. Dezember 1883 in Paris;† 5. November 1955 in Dax) war ein französischer Maler. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 2 Werk 3 Literatur 4 Weblinks …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Maurice Utrillo — Maurice Utrillo, nacido Maurice Valadon, (París, 25 de diciembre de 1883 París, 5 de noviembre de 1955) pintor francés. Pintor francés de principios del siglo XX dentro de la denominada Escuela de París, que es el …   Wikipedia Español

  • Utrillo — (Maurice) (1883 1955) peintre français; fils naturel de Suzanne Valadon. Il peignit surtout Montmartre, un quartier de Paris …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Maurice — /mawr is, mor , maw rees /; for 3 also Fr. /maw rddees /, n. 1. German, Moritz. 1521 53, German general: elector of Saxony 1547 53. 2. of Nassau, 1567 1625, Dutch statesman. 3. a male given name. * * * (as used in expressions) Barrès Auguste… …   Universalium

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