Victor Tardieu (French, 1868-1937)
Born in Orliénas, France, Victor Tardieux enrolled at the École des Beaux-Arts de Lyon at the age of 19. Two years later, he moved to Paris to further his education, studying at the Académie Julian and subsequently, in 1890, at the École des Beaux-Arts de Paris. Concurrently, he was a student in the studios of painters Léon Bonnat and Albert Maignan until 1894.
The Salon of the Société des Peintres Français in 1902 marked a turning point in the artist's life as his work "Travail" won the first national prize. This accolade granted him a two-year travel grant, during which he journeyed between Italy and England. These initial voyages allowed him to cultivate his penchant for genre painting, particularly representations of commercial ports. From 1909 onwards, he began receiving significant public commissions, such as the project for the communal hall of Les Lilas. These undertakings contributed to his increasing recognition.
The year 1920 was pivotal for the artist as he won the Indochina Prize, leading him to travel to the Far East for six months. This journey ultimately prompted him, in 1921, to settle permanently in Indochina. He continued to undertake public commissions, the most notable being the fresco created for the amphitheater of the University of Indochina in Hanoi. This commission was interrupted in 1925 by a more extensive project: the establishment of the École des Beaux-Arts d’Indochine. Born from his collaboration with the artist Nguyen Van Tho (known as Nam Son), Tardieux became its director until his death in 1937. This school succeeded in establishing itself as a lasting and unique educational model, fostering the development of numerous artists and artistic branches in Asia.
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