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Georges Valmier

1885 Angoulême
1937 Paris

The painter, lithographer, costume illustrator, and stage illustrator Georges Valmier was born on April 10, 1885 in Angoulême. He first visited the Montmartre in Paris at the age of five and continually returned to it in later years. In 1907, he was accepted at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and studied here for two years under Luc-Olivier Merson (1846–1920).
Valmier oriented his art upon Paul Cézanne (1839–1906), whose retrospective he attended in 1907 at the Salon d’Automne. Beginning in 1913, the artist participated in the exhibition in the Salon des Indépendants together with other avant-garde painters. However, the First World War forced him to stop painting. He was drafted and sketched his impressions of the war during this period. In 1917, Valmier was once again able to dedicate himself to painting.
After meeting the art dealer and collector Léonce Rosenberg (1879–1947) in 1918, the artist signed an agreement with him until Valmier‘s death in 1937.
Together with other painters, musicians, and poets, Georges Valmier frequented Rosenberg’s L’Effort Moderne gallery. The art dealer organized the first individual exhibitions by the artist in January 1921.
Starting in 1923, he enhanced the staffages in his landscapes. These acquired a certain similarity to those by the painter Fernand Léger (1881–1955) in the following years. In addition, he created masks and decorations for futuristic plays by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti (1876–1944) and dramas by Paul Claudel (1868–1943), Max Jacob (1876–1944), and Jules Romains (1885–1972).
Furthermore, Georges Valmier produced a design series for textiles and wallpaper that was published in a collection during the 1930s.
In 1928, Léonce Rosenberg entrusted several artists, including Georges Valmier, with the decoration of his house on the Rue Longchampan. This was the beginning of Georges Valmier’s final stylistic period, that of total abstraction. In 1931, this approach prompted him to join the group Abstraction-Création, which had the goal of pursing harmony in general. In the following year, the artist participated in the exhibition "Vingtcinq ans de peinture abstrait" in the Gallery Braun. In 1935, the Galérie des Beaux Arts also included works by Georges Valmier in the exhibition "Les créateurs du cubisme". One of his last works was the decoration for the French railway company’s pavilion at the 1937 Paris World Exhibition.
Two months before the opening of the exhibition, Georges Valmier died on March 25, 1937 in Paris.

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