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The Painters of the Sacred Heart



By day, they were customs officers, gardeners or carnival wrestlers; by night, they were self-taught painters, working independently, who created their own fantastic worlds of imagery. Sometimes characterized as “naïve” or “outsider” artists, Henri Rousseau (1844–1910), Camille Bombois (1883–1970), André Bauchant (1873–1958), Louis Vivin (1861–1939) and Séraphine Louis (1864–1942) were dubbed “the Painters of the Sacred Heart.” They were first discovered by German art historian and gallerist Wilhelm Uhde, who in 1928 organized their first joint exhibition in Paris. Uhde had long been drawn to art unconstrained by formal training or the art canon, and championed the Sacred Heart painters’ warm, emotional depictions of flowers, fruit, people and landscapes, real and imaginary. This volume celebrates their magical and sensual creations.

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