Art of the 20th Century


Art Styles in 20th century Art Map


Camille Clovis Trouille


Camille Clovis Trouille

Camille Clovis Trouille, was born on 24 October 1889, in La Fère, France. He worked as Sunday painter and a restorer and decorator of department store mannequins, and trained at the École des Beaux-Arts of Amiens from 1905 to 1910. He died on 24 September 1975 in Paris.

His service in World War I gave him a lifelong hatred of the military, expressed in his first major painting Remembrance (1931). The painting depicts a pair of wraith-like soldiers clutching white rabbits, an airborne female contortionist throwing a handful of medals, and the whole scene being blessed by a cross-dressing cardinal.
This contempt for the church as a corrupt institution provided Trouille with the inspiration for decades of pictorial blasphemies including
Dialogue at the Carmel shows a skull wearing a crown of thorns being used as an ornament.
The Mummy shows a mummified woman coming to life as a result of a shaft of light falling on a large bust of André Breton.
The Magician (1944) has a self-portrait satisfying a group of swooning women with a wave of his magician's wand.
My Tomb (1947) shows Trouille's tomb as a focal point of corruption and depravity in a graveyard.
Trouille's other common subjects were sex, as shown in Lust (1959), a portrait of the Marquis de Sade sitting in the foreground of a landscape decorated with a tableau of various perversions, and a "madly egoistic bravado" employed as self-satirism.
His portrait of a reclining nude shown from behind entitled Oh! Calcutta, Calcutta! - a pun in French - was chosen as the title for the 1969 musical revue. (The French phrase "oh quel cul t'as" translates roughly as "oh what a lovely backside you have".)
After his work was seen by Louis Aragon and Salvador Dalí, Trouille was declared a Surrealist by André Breton - a label Trouille accepted only as a way of gaining exposure, not having any real sympathy with the Surrealism movement.The simple style and lurid colouring of Trouille's paintings echo the lithographic posters used in advertising in the first half of the 20th Century.




























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