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 George David Coulon  (1822 - 1904)

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Lived/Active: Louisiana      Known for: portrait, landscape, religion, photos

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George David Coulon
An example of work by George David Coulon
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Selencourt, France, George David Coulon became a prominent painter of portrait and landscapes in New Orleans during the latter part of the 19th century. His depictions of the swamps and bayous of the regions were some of the first paintings of that subject matter. He was one of the founders of the Southern Art Union and the Artists Association of New Orleans. He was also the husband of Marie-Paoline Casbergue Coulon, and they had two artist children, George Amede Coulon and Mary Elizabeth Coulon.

He studied in New Orleans with Julien Hudson, Franz Joseph Fleishbein, Jacques Amans, Toussaint-Francois Bigot, Leon Pomarede, and Antoine Mondelli, and in 1880, was a founding member of the Southern Art Union.

He arrived in New Orleans with his parents and became an assistant to Leon Pomarede in painting the "Transfiguration" for St. Patrick's Church, and subsequently gained his own commissions including the frescoing of the ceiling of the Old Criminal Court in the Cabildo. He taught painting at several local girls academies, and pursuing his interest in photography, he and worked with photographer John Hawley Clarke, tinting photographs with pastels and oils.

Peter Falk, "Who Was Who in American Art"
John Mahe III, "Encyclopedia of New Orleans Artists"

Biography from Charleston Renaissance Gallery:

A native of France (Seloncourt), George David Coulon arrived in New
Orleans with his family in 1833.  He studied with many local
artists including François (Franz) Fleischbein, Julien Hudson, and
Toussaint Bigot.  Coulon initially established himself as a
portrait painter; his first known work is dated 1842 and is recorded as
such in the city directory the following year.  He soon expanded
his repertoire to include landscapes, still-life, and animal subjects,
and added painting restoration to his professional skills.  He
began teaching art at various local institutions in 1851, and also
executed some public commissions including a project at St. Patrick’s
Church in New Orleans.

Coulon gained prominence in New Orleans
art circles and was a founding member of the Southern Art Union in 1880
and the Artists’ Association of New Orleans.  He also recorded
brief biographies of contemporary New Orleans artists in an attempt to
document the city’s cultural history. 

Though he worked from life, he was also involved with photography, and
by 1872, he was documented as working in partnership with photographer
John Hawley Clarke, for whom he tinted photographic images in color,
executed imaginary scenes, and copied old master prints and
photographs.  Coulon’s style evolved from a restrained, detailed
linearity informed by European sources, to a more fluid realism that
became increasingly skillful.  He continued to paint portraits and
also produced a significant body of work devoted to southern landscape

For more information on this artist or the Southern masterworks in our collection, please visit our gallery website.

This essay is copyrighted by the Charleston Renaissance Gallery and may not be reproduced or transmitted without written permission from the Hicklin Galleries, LLC.

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