ANDRÉ LHOTE 1885-1962
André Lhote was born on July 5th 1885 in Bordeaux, where he learned wood carving at a furniture maker's studio at the age of thirteen. A little later Lhote entered the School of Fine Arts to study sculpture. When leaving his parents' house to set up a small studio in 1905 he wanted to focus on painting and devote himself to it.
Ever since he started his studies, Lhote had also practiced his passion for painting autodidactically. His talent was proven by the fact that he presented his works in a first solo exhibition at Druet's in 1910, four years after he had moved to Paris. The artist was not only interested in the practical side of painting but also on its theoretical foundations. Lhote took the opportunity to co-found the journal Nouvelle Revue française, in which he published his critical considerations on art until 1940.
In 1912 the painter joined the Section d'Or group and stylistically approached Cubism. When the war broke out, Lhote was drafted into the military. This interrupted his creative work for three years. In 1918, Lhote pursued his project to found a painting school in Paris. From 1920, his theoretical findings attracted an interested audience during his numerous lecture tours in France and abroad.
In 1938 the painter purchased an old house in Gordes (South of France), where he lived at the beginning of the war with his wife and his colleague painter Marc Chagall. The couple remained in Gordes until 1942, then they returned to Paris, where Lhote wanted to teach again at the painting school.
After the end of the war, André Lhote started again his lecture tours, travelling to Belgium, England, Italy and in 1950 for the first time to Egypt, where he returned a year later to hold lectures at the Cairo Art Academy. In 1952, his theoretical treatises on art took him to Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Belo Horizonte and Bahia. After his return to Paris, his lectures focused on the Egyptian art in the Valley of the Kings.
In 1955 his work was awarded the National Grand Prize for Painting. The UNESCO Commission for Sculpture named Lhote president of the « International Association of Painters, Engravers and Sculptors ». Numerous international exhibitions such as an exhibition of his work at the National Museum of Modern Art in Paris in 1957, recognized the oeuvre of the painter and art critic.