[2] The young Bertrand Redon acquired the nickname "Odilon" from his mother's first name, Odile. ", "I have often, as an exercise and as a sustenance, painted an object down to the smallest accidents of its visual appearance; but the day left me sad and with an unsatiated thirst. [22], The art historian Michael Gibson says that Redon began to want his works, even the ones darker in color and subject matter, to portray "the triumph of light over darkness."[23]. He began the formal study of drawing at fifteen but, at his father's insistence, he changed to architecture. Only details of trees, twigs with leaves, and budding flowers in an endless horizon can be seen. I believe that it is there that I have given my most personal note." The next day I let the other source run, that of imagination, through the recollection of the forms and I was then reassured and appeased. ", "The Artist submits from day to day to the fatal rhythm of the impulses of the universal world which encloses him, continual center of sensations, always pliant, hypnotized by the marvels of nature which he loves, he scrutinizes. ", "If the art of the artist is the song of his life, a grave or sad melody, I must have sounded the note of gaiety in color". His popularity increased when a catalogue of etchings and lithographs was published by André Mellerio in 1913; that same year, he was given the largest single representation at the groundbreaking U.S. International Exhibition of Modern Art (aka Armory Show), in New York City, Chicago and Boston. He is perhaps best known today for the "dreamlike" paintings created in the first decade of the 20th century, which were heavily inspired by Japanese art and which, while continuing to take inspiration from nature, heavily flirted with abstraction. A large head held aloft by wings floats above a tranquil sea, gazing upon a small sailboat with enormously expressive eyes. After his charcoal or ‘noir’ period came to a close during the 1890s, oils and pastels became Redon’s favoured media. The vase is decorated with an image of an Amazon slaying a man, referring to the Greek myth of women warriors whose conflation of feminine and masculine traits echoes the conflation of human and plant forms in the drawing. In 1903 Redon was awarded the Legion of Honor. A similarly evocative approach characterizes the poetry of Mallarmé and other Symbolists, who believed suggestion, rather than description, to be the highest goal of art. In the lower left, the fronds of a palm-like plant can be seen, and the sky is full of thick clouds. Still, Redon remained relatively unknown until the appearance in 1884 of a cult novel by Joris-Karl Huysmans titled À rebours (Against Nature). 1900–1910, (Princeton University Art Museum), Flower Clouds, 1903 (The Art Institute of Chicago), Initiation to Study: Two Young Ladies (vers 1905) Dallas Museum of Art, oil on canvas 93 x 65 cm, Apparition, 1905–1910, (Princeton University Art Museum), Chariot of Apollo, c. 1910 (Musée d'Orsay), Portrait of Violette Heymann, 1910 (Cleveland Museum of Art), Saint Sebastian, 1910–1912, (National Gallery of Art), Pandora, c. 1914 (Metropolitan Museum of Art), Les Anemones (Still Life with Anemones), c. 1900-1910 (Minneapolis Institute of Art), Odilon Redon, Maurice Denis, 1903. Redon is one of the most important and original of all the Symbolist artists. The drawing may be related to an exhibition Redon saw in Paris in 1881 featuring the inhabitants of the Tierra del Fuego. ", "All of my prints...were nothing but the fruit of curious, attentive, anxious, and impassioned analysis; of what power of expression could be contained in a greasy lithograph crayon, with the aid of paper and stone.