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Nicolas Poussin

French, 1594–1665

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Nicolas Poussin

French, 1594–1665

450
Followers
Biography

A founder of French Classicism, Nicolas Poussin drew his subjects from history, biblical stories, and Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Poussin moved to Rome early in his career where, inspired by Titian, he painted in a sensual and dramatic style rich in color. He received his only papal commission in 1628 and painted The Martyrdom of Saint Erasmus for the Church of Saint Peter, one of his largest and most elaborate works. The painting was ill received, prompting Poussin to change the course of his career and focus on smaller, more subdued and poetic paintings for collectors. Poussin’s later style opposed the prevailing Baroque tastes of the period, instead adapting the conventions of classical art by paring down forms and emphasizing moral content. In Rome, Poussin associated with a lively group of intellectuals around Cassiano dal Pozzo, who became an important friend and patron.

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 2 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., and 2 more
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
frieze
Biography

A founder of French Classicism, Nicolas Poussin drew his subjects from history, biblical stories, and Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Poussin moved to Rome early in his career where, inspired by Titian, he painted in a sensual and dramatic style rich in color. He received his only papal commission in 1628 and painted The Martyrdom of Saint Erasmus for the Church of Saint Peter, one of his largest and most elaborate works. The painting was ill received, prompting Poussin to change the course of his career and focus on smaller, more subdued and poetic paintings for collectors. Poussin’s later style opposed the prevailing Baroque tastes of the period, instead adapting the conventions of classical art by paring down forms and emphasizing moral content. In Rome, Poussin associated with a lively group of intellectuals around Cassiano dal Pozzo, who became an important friend and patron.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 2 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., and 2 more
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
frieze
Articles Featuring Nicolas Poussin
The Bible Stories Essential to Understanding Art History
Dec 18th, 2018
The Bible Stories Essential to Understanding Art History
10 Artists Who Unpacked the Symbolism of the Four Seasons
Sep 21st, 2018
10 Artists Who Unpacked the Symbolism of the Four Seasons
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