LEBOURG, Albert-Charles
(b. 1849, Montfort-sur-Risle, d. 1928, Rouen)

Biography

French painter. He had an early interest in architecture and studied under the architect Drouin at the École Municipale de Dessin in Rouen. He became increasingly interested in art and through Drouin met the landscape painter Victor Delamarre (1811-1868) who advised and taught him. Giving up architecture altogether, he then attended the École Municipale de Peinture et de Dessin in Rouen under Gustave Morin (1809-1886).

In 1871 he met the collector Laperlier through whom he obtained the post of professor of drawing at the Société des Beaux-Arts in Algiers. He remained there from 1872 to 1877, producing works such as Street in Algiers (1875; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen). He also experimented with depicting a single site in a variety of different lights, in a manner similar to the late works of Monet.

After giving up his teaching post in Algeria in 1877 he returned to Paris where he attended Jean-Paul Laurens's studio from 1878 to 1880. It was at this point that he became aware of Impressionism; later he became friendly with Degas, Monet and Sisley. He first exhibited at the Salon de la Société des Artistes Français in 1883 and again in 1886, and after the foundation of the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts (1889) he exhibited there regularly from 1891 to 1914.

Between 1884 and 1886 he spent much time in the Auvergne region, producing such Impressionist works as Snow in Auvergne (1886; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen), in which a river re-establishes the habitual presence of water in his work. After living and working in numerous places in northern France, Lebourg travelled in the Netherlands (1895-97), and in 1900 he spent a short period in Britain, which confirmed his love of Turner, Constable and Gainsborough.

He continued working in a luminous Impressionist style with landscapes such as Small Farm by the Water (Ile de Vaux) (1903; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen) up until 1921 when he was paralysed by a stroke.