PUVIS DE CHAVANNES, Pierre-Cécile
(b. 1824, Lyon, d. 1898, Paris)
French painter. He attempted to recreate something of the monumental Italian fresco style in his huge decorative canvases painted in oil, but kept flat and pale in colour and simplified in the drawing to give something of the effect of fresco. He decorated many Town Halls and other official buildings in France, the most famous being the Pantheon, Paris (1874-78, 1898, Life of St Geneviève), and the Hotel de Ville, Paris (1889-93). He was particularly admired by the artists grouped under Post-Impressionism and Neo-Impressionism as a painter of symbolical and allegorical decorations who respected the plane of the wall and composed his murals in simple areas of colour and with a rhythmic linear pattern: with Moreau and Redon he was a leading Symbolist. He decorated the Library at Boston in 1893-95.