Among the most representative painters of what is known as the School of Rouen is Léon-Jules Lemaître (1850-1905). He was a talented student at the school of drawing in his city and was awarded a scholarship that enabled him to continue his career in the capital. Between 1873 and 1879, he attended the first exhibitions of the Impressionists, who enthused him more than the lessons of his master, the uncompromising Gérôme. As a link with Parisian circles, he converted his friends who had remained in Rouen, Charles Angrand, Charles Frêchon, Joseph Delattre to Impressionism, then to Neo-Impressionism. Together, they formed the "Four Musketeers" of the School of Rouen. He continued this adventure until 1890, before specializing in the views of Rouen, which ensured him a real success with the amateurs of the time, confirmed by the following generations. To this day, no personal exhibition has retraced this career, and no publication has been dedicated to this central figure in the diffusion of Impressionism in Normandy. In partnership with the Association des Amis de l'École de Rouen, the Musée des Beaux-Arts intends to bring together a representative collection of the painter's various periods, from public and private collections, thus producing the first monograph devoted to Léon-Jules Lemaître.
As part of the "Léon Jules Lemaître (1850-1905) : par les rues de Rouen" exhibition, Helene Bailly Gallery will lend Léon Jules Lemaître's "Portrait présumé de Charles Angrand sur une brouette dans un jardin surplombant Rouen" (1889) to the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Rouen.