Cordey, Frédéric

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Frédéric (-Samuel) Cordey (1854-1911)



Cordey joined only the 3rd ‘impressionist’ exposition in 1877:

At the 3rd ‘impressionist’ exposition Cordey showed 4 works.
Cordey was invited by his close friend Renoir for who’s famous painting ‘Moulin de la Galette’ he also modelled (iR69;iR3;R1,p391).
See link for his -/-pictures. See link for an account.


Frédéric-Samuel Cordey at the Salon:

Cordey only exhibited at the Salon in 1876 with a portrait (iR1).
See link for his -/-pictures. See link for an account.


Cordey as an artist:

Cordey was a pupil of Isidore Pils (iR1;R9;iR69;iR3;iR4), Gustave Boulanger (R9;iR69;iR3), Lehmann (R16;iR22;iR4;R1,p384), Gérôme (iR4) and Péquegnot (iR1). Together with his friend Franc-Lamy (and Norbert Goeneutte) he resisted against the classical teachings of the Ecole des Beaux-arts (R3;iR5;R1,p384/5). Together with Frank-Lamy, Rivière, Lestringuez, Duret, Chocquet and Edmond Maître (a writer / musician), Cordey gathered in the garden of Renoir’s house in the Rue Cortot and in his studio on the Rue Saint-Georges. Many of them helped to carry everyday the canvas on which Renoir would paint his famous ‘Moulin de la Galette‘, on which most of them also were portrayed (R1,p384-6). Cordey and Frank-Lamy later joined the wednesday dinners at Eugène Murer, which were also frequented by Cézanne, Guillaumin, Monet, Pissarro, Renoir, Sisley and also Guérard (Eva Gonzalès’ husband), the etcher Bresdin (Redon’s master), Cabaner (a musician), Champleury, Hoschedé and Père Tanguy (R1,p414). In a letter to Pissarro (1881/01/24) Caillebotte includes him in the groupe (of Impressionists) opposit of the group of Realist around Degas (R1,p448). In early 1881, when Renoir was in Algiers, he met Cordey (and Lhote and Lestringuez) (R1,p454).
Received positive critics from Geffroy, Paul Alexis and Tabarant.


Was Cordey an Impressionist?

Cordey was a close friend of Renoir (iR3;iR69). He attended his studio in the Rue Saint-Georges and his house in Rue Cortot and belonged to a circle of inseparable friends, including Franc-Lamy (R82,p22-3; see).  Cordey several times modelled for Renoir: in Moulin de la Galette (1876), conversation (1879ca). He also was a model for Norbert Goeneutte (1885ca).
Cordey regularly visited Café de la Nouvelle-Athènes (R3;iR5). Maybe he also joined the meetings in the restaurant of Murer (R3;iR5). Cordey painted with Cézanne and Guillaumin in Auvers-sur-Oise, Eragny and Moret-sur-Loing (R3;iR5).

Biography of Frédéric Cordey:

  • 1854/07/09: Frédéric-Samuel Cordey was born in Paris (iR24;iR69)
  • Cordey had a personal fortune (R3;iR4)
  • 1872-75: pupil of Isidore Pils, together with Franc-Lamy and Goeneutte (iR5;iR4).
  • 1875: after the death of Pils, Franc Lamy, Cordey and Goeneutte became pupil of Henri Lehmann (iR4;iR5)
  • 1876?: they switched classes and became pupil of Jean-Léon Gérôme (iR4;iR5).
  • 1876: Cordey lived 35, Rue Forest, Paris (Montmartre) (iR1)
  • 1877: Cordey lived at 14, Rue Le Chapelais, Paris (Montmartre) (R2,p204;iR1)
  • 1881/05/14: exhibited ‘Le Grog’ at the auction in Hôtel Drouot to support the musician Cabanel, organized by his friend Franc Lamy (iR40;iR3)
  • He made portraits of Nina de Callias and Léon Dierx (‘prince des poètes’) (iR3).
  • 1881: Cordey made a trip in Algiers together with André Lhote and Lestringuez (iR3;iR5)
    In Marz/April Renoir meets them there (R31,p300).
  • 1884 (and or 1887): Cordey exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants (iR3;iR22)
  • 1903-08: exhibited at the Salon d’Automne (iR3;iR1)
  • 1911/02/18 Cordey died in Paris (iR24;iR69)
  • 1913-14: a retrospective exhibition of Cordey at the Choiseul Gallery (iR3)




There is not much known about Frédéric Cordey. Most sources on Impressionism don’t mention him at all. Others just mention that he exhibited at the 3rd ‘impressionist’ exhibition in 1877 and that he was a friend of Renoir. My main sources are Rewald (R1,p384-6+391+414+448+454), Moffett (R2), Walther (R3), Denvir (R5), Schurr & Cabanne (2008,R9,p194), the Salon database (iR1), Benezit (iR69) and xx. For other general references (=R) see. In books about Impressionism there are no paintings of Cordey. Some refer to him as a model in paintings of others (R1,p382+383). My main sources (for the pictures) from the internet are Wikimedia (iR6) and xx. For other references to internet sites (=iR) see. For other additional references (=aR) see below. See links for practical hints and abbreviations and for the subscription of the paintings.
For further reading see:
Bénézit (1976,IIIp164=R75), Busse (1977,p261=R77), Witt (1978,p66=R78).
Thalasso, Adolphe: Frédéric Samuel Cordey; L’art et les artistes. Rendu exposition à la galerie Choiseul, 1914.

Additional references:
  1. x