Les Bulles de Savon, 1896

by Ferdinand Puigaudeau


Puigaudeau is best known for his own very distinctive style of painting which emphasized the play of light in moonlit scenes that often involved fireworks, Breton carnivals, and coastal views as well as sunrises and sunsets. Even here, in what appears to be an indoor scene, those evocative colours of purple and orange play a large part in imbuing the scene with atmosphere and mysticism.

MEDIUM: Oil on canvas
DIMENSIONS: (unframed) 19.5 x 25.5 ins/ 49.5 x 65.8 cm
SIGNATURE: Signed ‘F. du Puigaudeau’ and dated (lower right)

Catalogue No: 6348 Categories: ,

In this painting, two young children are seemingly entranced by the creation of bubbles in a warm glow, perhaps by a fire. A peaceful and innocent scene.


Private Collection, United States

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Ferdinand Loyen du Puigaudeau was born in 1864 in Nantes, a city in western France along the Loire River. He received art training at a young age and travelled extensively to Rome, Flanders, and Venice. When he finally returned to France in 1888, he settled in Pont-Aven and resided at the Pension Goanec, an inexpensive hostel where he met Paul Gauguin, Emile Bernard, and Charles Laval.

While influenced by many artists with whom he lived and painted, Puigaudeu’s work is distinctive. He attempts to convey both the symbolism as well as the poetry of nature with harmonious colours that seem almost ethereal at times. Puigeaudeu often painted the same scene at different times of the day to explore the play of light in much the same way as Claude Monet experimented with the effect of light.

Puigaudeau was greatly influenced by the work of Claude Monet and Paul Renoir. The artists from Europe as well as the Americas who travelled to Brittany to paint were attracted to the region by its religious traditions, its mythical practices and culture. This École de Pont Aven gave birth to a new style of painting which was characterized by an emphasis on the vividness of colour, spatial arrangements that were greatly simplified, and by forms that were sharply delineated.

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