Maximilien Luce remains a very important figure in French Post-Impressionist Art, as a Pointillist and a social realist. Along with Pissarro, Georges Seurat (1859-1891) and Paul Signac (1863-1935) Luce was one of the founders of the Neo-Impressionist School and was, for a period of time, a strict Pointillist, although after 1920 Luce started to paint in a freer manner.
Luce portrayed the contemporary world with passion, and Paris was one of his most beloved subjects, with the artist soon becoming preoccupied with his Parisian subject matter and the daily lives of the petit people.
As a youth Maximilen Luce was apprenticed to become an engraver and in 1876 he joined the workshop of the engraver Eugène Froment (1844-1900), a graduate of the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs, as a qualified craftsman. There, Luce worked on engraving, numerous illustrations for French newspapers as well as some for foreign periodicals.
In 1877, Luce left Paris and went to London. When he returned to France in 1879 he was called for military service. It was during his military service that Luce met Charles Emile Carolus- Duran (1837-1917), the famous French painter and sculpture whose students included countless artists. Luce entered Carolus-Duran’s studio, a move which not only gave him meticulous training as a draftsman, but introduced him to the leading painters of the time.
Luce met Camille Pissarro (1830-1903), with whom he became very good friends and who gave Luce much artistic advice. In 1887, Luce joined the Société des Indépendants, after which time he consistently participated in the avant-garde group’s exhibitions.