Georges Chessial's life is a wonderful story of how art - and talent - are able to change a man's destiny. Born in Paris in 1907 to a coachman and a concirge, he spent several years of his childhood bedridden due to illness. It was his elder brother Marcel who gave him a box of paints, to break the spell of boredom - and magic happened. Georges discovered how to transfigure reality with a paintbrush, and was admitted, aged 14 (!), the Paris Academy of Fine Arts, studying with Jean Paul Laurens.
He obtained the first prize of Rome for the most promising young artist in 1932, with a stipend to spend a year at the Villa Medicis. It was then that the artwork presented here, an oil on paper was painted. It depicts, of course, the Colosseum and the Titus Arch.
After his sojourn in Rome, Cheyssial would continue to receive great honours, being named Member of the Academy of Fine Arts in 1958, and President of the Institut in 1975.
Our oil on paper is signed at the lower right and situated at the lower left. It is framed behind glass in a more recent bronze effect frame with a sand coloured mount. Measuring 43 x 55 cm at sight, the overall size including the frame is 58,5 x 69 cm.
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