Georges Rouault was a French artist whose work combined elements of Fauvism and Expressionism with its jewel-like tones and bold graphic lines and an exploration of the relationships between power, symbolism and primary colours.
He was born in 1871, apprenticed with a stain glass artisan while studying at the École des Arts Décoratifs, and later studied at the École des Beaux-Arts under the famed Symbolist painter Gustave Moreau, who became a big influence in his artistic life. Between 1895 and 1898, the artist became a devout Roman Catholic as well as going through an emotional breakdown. He came out of this revitalized, moralistic and religious, and developed an interest in the flaws of society, frequenting Parisian courts of law to find subjects to paint.
Throughout the remainder of his career, much of his work was devoted to the depiction of prostitutes, clowns, and Christ. Rouault died on February 13, 1958 in Paris, France at the age of 86. Today, his works are held in the collections of the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, and the Tate Gallery in London, among others.