Adolphe Appian

Jacques Barthelemy Adolphe Appian aka. Adolphe Appian (1818-1898)

A leading French landscape artist of the nineteenth century, he first studied art in his native Lyon at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Adolphe Appian quickly established a strong reputation for his landscape paintings which enabled him to travel to Paris to conclude his studies. There he was inspired by such Barbizon painters and etchers as Corot and Daubigny. It is believed Adolphe Appian studied etching techniques under these masters.

Appian’s first submission to the Paris Salon in 1853 was a charcoal drawing (the salon exhibited highly finished “presentation” drawings and prints as well as paintings and sculpture); and it was as a “fusainiste” or master of charcoal and crayon landscape drawings that Appian first gained fame.

During the early 1860's original etching emerged as a major artistic force in France. Such publishers as the Gazette des Beaux-Arts and Cadart's, Societe des Aquafortistes regularly commissioned artists for original etchings. The first of Adolph Appian's etchings date from this period and during the following years many of his works in this medium were published by the Societe des Aquafortistes.

Appian’s career as a painter was firmly established in 1867, when his large Salon painting the Lac du Bourget was acquired by the Emperor Napoleon III. Throughout the 1870’s, he painted in the Pyrenees, in southern France and along the Riviera, and in Venice and Genoa. During this period he was one of the few artist to regularly show plein air (outdoor) painted sketches as well as large scale finished paintings as the Salon; and her was thus often associated with the younger Impressionists.

Over his lifetime Appian received more that a dozen gold medals for landscapes in virtually all media: drawings, paintings, and prints, both at the Paris Salon and at the World’s Fairs in Munich and London as well as Paris.

Adolphe Appian was elected a Chevalier of the Legion d'Honneur. Today his etchings and paintings are included in public museums in Amiens, Bourges, Grenoble, Nantes, Paris, Rouen, Lyon and elsewhere.

He died in Lyon in 1898.

Source of Biography