Fleury François Richard

Fleury François Richard (25 February 1777, Lyon – 14 March 1852, Écully), sometimes called Fleury-Richard, was a painter of the École de Lyon. A student of Jacques-Louis David, Fleury-Richard and his friend Pierre Révoil were precursors of the Troubador style.

Fleury Richard (self portrait in youth)
Fleury–Richard (self portrait in youth)
Fleury Richard - Jean-Marie Jacomin - MBA Lyon sans-cadre
Portrait of Fleury François Richard by Jean-Marie Jacomin in 1852


The son of a magistrate, Fleury François Richard studied at the collège de l'Oratoire in Lyon then at the école de Dessin under Alexis Grognard. At the latter he met Pierre Révoil. In 1796 he joined the Paris studio of Jacques-Louis David. His first paintings had major success and he mingled with the Paris intelligentsia, among whom the Troubador style was highly favoured. He became the favourite painter of empress Joséphine de Beauharnais, who bought many of his paintings, so that the European renown gained by his first works was recognised by Madame de Staël.

In 1808 he set up his own studio at the palais Saint-Pierre at Lyon, having been granted it by the city for the benefits he had brought to it by his reputation. He was initiated into the Scottish Rite Masonic Lodge of Isis in 1809, and in 1814 married a banker's daughter, Blanche Menut. He was made a knight of the Légion d'honneur in 1815.

Seeking inspiration, he visited Geneva, Milan, Turin and the Dauphiné. He served as a professor at the École des beaux-arts de Lyon from 1818 to 1823. In 1851 he set himself up at Écully, devoting himself to writing. He edited his Souvenirs, lives of painters and a work on painting in the second-order towns of France, Quelques réflexions sur l'enseignement de la peinture dans les villes de second ordre.


Jeune fille à la fontaine
Young girl at a fountain, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon

Fleury-Richard received his first lessons in Lyon, a silk-producing town, but he was mainly formed by his time in the neoclassical atmosphere of David's studio. Like other English and German artists of the era Fleury-Richard was passionate about history and fascinated by medieval chivalry and the Renaissance. His visit to the Musée des monuments français, where he saw the tomb of Valentina Visconti on display, inspired his first major work in a utopian and melancholic Troubadour style, which also originated in David's studio. This style would impose a powerful historicist current on the masters of the 14th and 15th centuries, a more anecdotal that truly historical iconography. François-René Martin presents this tendency as "a retreat into the private sphere.[1] Richard was notably amazed by the works attributed to the king-poet "bon Roi René" and most particularly by his art history treatise Le Cuer d’amours espris.

On his return to Lyon, he cultivated his friendship with Pierre Révoil and, with Révoil and a small inner-circle, discovered nature and the archaeological remains around Lyon, in Fourvière, Saint-Just or the Île Barbe. It was in this context that Révoil, in 1798, showed both nature and remains in a drawing he offered to his "brother". To the Troubadour painters' historicism he blended "a poetry of nature" and "researches into distance or loneliness".[2] Also the abandoned crypt of Saint Irénée at Saint-Just was used by Fleury-Richard in his studies for "A Knight in prayer in a chapel, preparing himself for combat"; the construction used in "Young girl at a fountain" was a Roman sarcophagus at Île-Barbe; also at Île-Barbe, associated to the cloister of Notre-Dame-de-l'Isle at Vienne in The Hermitage of Vaucouleurs.

When some scholars at the start of the 20th century sought to connect him to the école lyonnaise despite his training in Paris, his national career and his painting – the historical genre was not specific to Lyon.[3]

In Fleury-Richard's critical writings scholars find a reflection prefiguring his attachment to Symbolism before it existed: "Painting is not an imitation of reality. It is a symbol, a figurative language which presents the image of thought; and thought rises to the source of infinite beauty, there finding the archetypical forms signalled by Plato, of which created beings are only copies.[4]"


Fleury-François Richard - Valentine of Milan Mourning her Husband, the Duke of Orléans
Valentine of Milan weeping for the death of her husband Louis of Orléans (c. 1802) Hermitage Museum, Saint-Petersburg
See also Category:Paintings by Fleury François Richard


Comminges et Adélaïde

Comminges and Adalaïde in the couvent de La Trappe

Intérieur de couvent

Interior of a convent (Couvent des Cordeliers de l'Observance) Lyon

Scène dans une chapelle ruinée

Scene in a ruined chapel, Lyon


  • ‹See Tfd›(in French) Fleury Richard et Pierre Révoil : la peinture troubadour, Marie-Claude Chaudonneret, Arthéna, Paris (1980) 217 pp. [1]
  • ‹See Tfd›(in French) Le Temps de la peinture, Lyon 1800–1914, sous la direction de Sylvie Ramond, Gérard Bruyère et Léna Widerkher, Fage éditions, Lyon (2007) 335 pp. ISBN 978-2-84975-101-5


  1. ^ "To the exasperation of public thematic works and heroic virtue, of which Davidian painting was the highest expression, they had been succeeded – at least among the inhabitants of Lyon – by the cult of sentiment, the desire to approach the private life of historical people" – ‹See Tfd›(in French) François-René Martin, Historicisme et utopie à Lyon au XIXe siècle, in Le Temps de la peinture, op. cit., p. 152.
  2. ^ ‹See Tfd›(in French) François-René Martin, ibidem.
  3. ^ Alphonse Germain, cited by Pierre Vaisse, Le Temps de la peinture, op. cit. p. 21.
  4. ^ Quoted by Stephen Bann, Le Temps de la peinture, op. cit., p. 57.


External links

A Knight at Prayer in a Chapel, Preparing Himself for Combat

Un Chevalier se préparant au combat (English: A Knight Preparing Himself for Combat) is a c. 1805 painting by Fleury François Richard. According to the artist's description, the painting depicts a knight praying in the chapel of the Église Saint-Irénée de Lyon, which had been ruined by the Baron des Adrets in 1562.The 14 by 17 inch oil on wood painting has been in the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon since 1981.The painting was shown in the Paris Salon of 1806, and highly praised by Pierre-Jean-Baptiste Chaussard, although he argued that if the date was supposed to be after 1562 as the artist stated, then the armour was of the wrong period, and the walls of the chapel insufficiently ruined.

Big Bad Wolf

The Big Bad Wolf is a fictional wolf appearing in several cautionary tales that include some of Aesop's Fables (c. 600 BC) and Grimms' Fairy Tales. Versions of this character have appeared in numerous works, and has become a generic archetype of a menacing predatory antagonist.

Catalog of paintings in the Louvre Museum

The Catalog of paintings in the Louvre Museum lists the painters of the collection of the Louvre Museum as they are catalogued in the Joconde database. The collection contains roughly 5,500 paintings by 1,400 artists born before 1900, and over 500 named artists are French by birth. For painters with more than two works in the collection, or for paintings by unnamed and unknown artists, see the Louvre website. Most artists in the collection are represented with only one or two works, but some artists are represented with many many more; for example artists with over 50 works catalogued are Théodore Chassériau, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Eugène Delacroix, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Eustache Le Sueur, Peter Paul Rubens, and Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes.

Per artist a maximum of two artwork IDs is provided with which the artwork can be searched online. The two-letter prefix in the ID indicates the origin of the artwork: MI = Musées Impériaux; RF = République Française; INV = Inventaire Department of Paintings & Department of Sculptures.

There are 21 women artists represented with works in the collection: Marie-Guillemine Benoist, Élise Bruyère, Élisabeth Sophie Chéron, Eugénie Dalton, Madeleine Goblot, Hortense Haudebourt-Lescot, Joséphine Houssaye, Angelica Kauffmann, Adèle de Kercado, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, Judith Leyster, Catherine Lusurier, Constance Mayer, Louise Moillon, Julie Philipault, Rose Marie Pruvost, Thea Schleusner, Nanine Vallain, Anne Vallayer-Coster, Elisabeth Louise Vigée-LeBrun, and Marie-Denise Villers.

Chaperon (headgear)

Chaperon ( or ; Middle French: chaperon) was a form of hood or, later, highly versatile hat worn in all parts of Western Europe in the Middle Ages. Initially a utilitarian garment, it first grew a long partly decorative tail behind called a liripipe, and then developed into a complex, versatile and expensive headgear after what was originally the vertical opening for the face began to be used as a horizontal opening for the head. It was especially fashionable in mid-15th century Burgundy, before gradually falling out of fashion in the late 15th century and returning to its utilitarian status. It is the most commonly worn male headgear in Early Netherlandish painting, but its complicated construction is often misunderstood.

Claudius Jacquand

Claude Jacquand, known as Claudius (11 December 1803, Lyon – 2 April 1878, Paris) was a French painter of historical tableaus, genre scenes and religious subjects.

Comminges and Adelaide in the Trappist Monastery

Comminges and Adelaide in the Trappist Monastery or Comminges digging his own tomb watched by Adelaide disguised as a monk is the final painting by Fleury François Richard, produced between 1822 and 1844 and now in the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon. Its subject is drawn from Les Amans malheureux, ou le Comte de Comminge (1764), a play adapted by François de Baculard d'Arnaud from the tragic lovestory of Mémoires du comte de Comminge (1735) by Claudine Guérin de Tencin.

François-Auguste Biard

François-Auguste Biard, born François Thérèse Biard (29 June 1799, Lyon - 20 June 1882, Samois-sur-Seine) was a French painter, known for his adventurous travels and the works depicting his experiences.

Jean-Marie Jacomin

Jean-Marie Jacomin (1789, Lyon - 6 May 1858, Lyon) was a French painter.

List of painters in the Web Gallery of Art

The List of painters in the Web Gallery of Art is a list of the named painters in the Web Gallery of Art (WGA). The online collection contains roughly 34,000 images by 4,000 artists, but only named artists with oil paintings in the database are listed alphabetically here. The painter's name is followed by a title of one of their paintings and its location, which is hosted on the WGA website. For painters with more than one painting in the WGA collection, or for paintings by unnamed or unattributed artists, see the Web Gallery of Art website or the corresponding Wikimedia Commons painter category. Of the 2,463 painters in the WGA database, over a quarter are Italians and about a third were born in the 17th-century, and they are mostly men. There are only 44 women, including Sofonisba Anguissola, Rosa Bonheur, Artemisia Gentileschi, Catharina van Hemessen, Angelica Kauffmann, Judith Leyster, Louise Moillon, Clara Peeters, Rachel Ruysch, and Elisabeth Louise Vigée-LeBrun.

For the complete list of artists and information about their artworks in the WGA collection, the database can be downloaded as a compressed file from the website.


Monastery Interior

Monastery Interior (full title - Monastery Interior - the Cordeliers de l'Observance Monastery) is a 19th century painting by Fleury François Richard, now in the musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon. It shows part of the former Cordeliers (Franciscan) monastery on the site known as 'Clos des Deux-Amants' - the site is now occupied by the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Lyon.

Montaigne Visiting Torquato Tasso in Prison (Richard)

Montaigne Visiting Torquato Tasso in Prison (French - Le Tasse en prison visité par Montaigne or Le Tasse et Montaigne) is an 1821 oil on canvas painting by Fleury François Richard, acquired in 1822 by the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon at the request of baron Rambaud, mayor of Lyon. It was first exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1822. It is one of the artist's last paintings, showing Torquato Tasso being visited by Montaigne.


Romanticism (also known as the Romantic era) was an artistic, literary, musical and intellectual movement that originated in Europe toward the end of the 18th century, and in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to 1850. Romanticism was characterized by its emphasis on emotion and individualism as well as glorification of all the past and nature, preferring the medieval rather than the classical. It was partly a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the aristocratic social and political norms of the Age of Enlightenment, and the scientific rationalization of nature—all components of modernity. It was embodied most strongly in the visual arts, music, and literature, but had a major impact on historiography, education, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. It had a significant and complex effect on politics, with romantic thinkers influencing liberalism, radicalism, conservatism and nationalism.The movement emphasized intense emotion as an authentic source of aesthetic experience, placing new emphasis on such emotions as apprehension, horror and terror, and awe—especially that experienced in confronting the new aesthetic categories of the sublimity and beauty of nature. It elevated folk art and ancient custom to something noble, but also spontaneity as a desirable characteristic (as in the musical impromptu). In contrast to the Rationalism and Classicism of the Enlightenment, Romanticism revived medievalism and elements of art and narrative perceived as authentically medieval in an attempt to escape population growth, early urban sprawl, and industrialism.

Although the movement was rooted in the German Sturm und Drang movement, which preferred intuition and emotion to the rationalism of the Enlightenment, the events and ideologies of the French Revolution were also proximate factors. Romanticism assigned a high value to the achievements of "heroic" individualists and artists, whose examples, it maintained, would raise the quality of society. It also promoted the individual imagination as a critical authority allowed of freedom from classical notions of form in art. There was a strong recourse to historical and natural inevitability, a Zeitgeist, in the representation of its ideas. In the second half of the 19th century, Realism was offered as a polar opposite to Romanticism. The decline of Romanticism during this time was associated with multiple processes, including social and political changes and the spread of nationalism.

Saint Amelia, Queen of Hungary

Saint Amelia, Queen of Hungary is an oil painting by Paul Delaroche which was investigated in 2016 by the BBC TV programme Fake or Fortune?

Scene in a Ruined Chapel

Scene in a Ruined Chapel is a 19th century painting by Fleury François Richard, now in the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon.

Troubadour style

Taking its name from medieval troubadours, the Troubadour Style, style troubadour in French, was a somewhat derisive term for French historical painting of the early 19th century with idealised depictions of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It can be seen as an aspect of Romanticism and a reaction against Neoclassicism, which was coming to an end at the end of the Consulate, and became particularly associated with Josephine Bonaparte and Caroline Ferdinande Louise, duchesse de Berry. In architecture the style was an exuberant French equivalent to the Gothic Revival of the Germanic and Anglophone countries. The style related to contemporary developments in French literature, and music, but the term is usually restricted to painting and architecture.

Vert-Vert (Richard)

Vert-Vert is an 1804 painting by Fleury François Richard, which has been in the collection of the musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon since around 1821. It is named after Vert-Vert, the parrot and eponymous hero of the poem Vert-Vert ou le Voyage du Perroquet de Nevers (1734) by Jean-Baptiste Gresset.


A widow is a woman whose spouse has died and a widower is a man whose spouse has died. The treatment of widows and widowers around the world varies.

Young Woman at a Fountain

Young Woman at a Fountain is an 1824 oil on canvas painting by Fleury François Richard, now in the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon. He painted it from one of his studies of monuments on Île Barbe. It shows a young woman filling a vessel at a fountain whose basin is an ancient Roman sarcophagus reused in the construction of the abbey on the island in 400.

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