French, 1830 - 1882
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Sellier was a pupil of Léon Cogniet, and in 1857 won the Grand Prix de Rome with a Resurrection de Lazare
and another prize with L'Enfant prodigue
. He went to Italy, but the paintings that he sent back to France met with an unfavourable reception - Léandre mort
, Madeleine pénitente
, Lévite d'Ephraim
(all in the Musée de Nancy). These pictures have a strange atmosphere and curious artificial light effects which anticipate certain works by Gustave Moreau. Discouraged, Sellier abandoned mystical subjects and painted instead portraits and scenes from family life. He became director of the Ecole de Dessin at Nancy, and keeper of the city museum.
Sellier's biographer, Charles de Meixmoron de Dombasle thought that he had been born too early:
"Twenty years later, his private dreams, his original and individual aspirations...would have made him a precursor of art nouveau...The essence of his art is the search for an ideal while respecting truth also heightens and transfigures it."
A selection of art exhibitions which have featured this
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