Pissarro, Lucien

just started

Lucien Pissarro (1863-1944)

more than the son of Camille



Was Lucien Pissarro an Impressionist?
If Lucienne Pissarro is mentioned in books on Impressionism, he is mentioned as a side figure, as the son of his famous father Camille with whom he wrote many lettres. Only exhibiting at the last ‘impressionist’ exposition in 1886, this seems correct. Most of his contacts with other Impressionists like Cézanne, Gauguin, Guillaumin, Monet and Renoir were through his father. Being born in 1863 he surely is of a younger generation than most of the Impressionist. So Lucienne Pissarro can be seen as a side-figure of the ‘impressionist’ art-movement.
When we look at his painting style, Lucien Pissarro painted from 1885/6 till 1891/2 in a neo-impressionist style. After that he returned to an impressionist painting style, with which he had started, inspired by his father. He also would promote Impressionism in England. But when we look closely his colours are often subdued and quite greyish. So we can say that mostly Lucien Pissarro painted in an impressionist painting style.


Lucien Pissarro only joined the 8th ‘impressionist’ exposition:
At the 8th ‘impressionist’ exposition in 1886 Lucien Pissarro showed probably at least 20 works, including at least 5 watercolours and 10 etchings on wood (catalogue numbers 114-123; no.123 containing 9 works; R2,p445).
See link for his -/-pictures. See link for an +/-account.


Lucien Pissarro at other exhibitions:
Lucien Pissarro did not exhibit at the Salon (iR1). He did join the Salon des Independents from 1886-94 (R16;R55;R3;iR3). 1887/12: exhibits with Fénéon at La Revue Indépendante (R5,p157). He joined Les XX in Brussels in 1888 (R3;R9). 1894/02/15: exhibits with ‘La Libre Esthétique’ in Brussels (R5,p194). Joins in 1895 the Art-Nouveau exhibition at Bing in Paris (R3). 1906: joined the New English Art Club, the NEAC (iR3;R55). 1907: Joined the Fitzroy Street Group (R55;aR8). 1911: Co-founder of the Camden Town Group (R3;R9;R55;iR3). 1913/05: 1st solo-exhibition in London (aR8;R3). 1913: co-founder of the London-group, but resigned before their first exhibition (aR8;R55). 1919: co-founder of the Monarro Group, who promotes Impressionism in England; the groupe seized in 1922 (R3;R55;iR3).


Lucien Pissarro as an artist:
Lucien Pissarro was a pupil of Auguste Lepère (iR24;iR65). Around 1885 Lucien had contact with Signac and Seurat, starts to work in an divisionist style (R4,p255; R55;R56). He also was befriended was Vincent van Gogh (aR8). In the early 1890’s Lucien starts to work again in a more classic impressionist style, using dashes and flecks instead of dots (R56). He remained faithful to the principles of his father’s impressionism. Almost all of his paintings depict the landscape, and he worked directly in front of his subject, whether out of doors or looking through a window. He wanted to depict the effects of weather and sunshine. (aR8)
Durand-Ruel bought many works of Lucien (R4,p270). Appreciated by Félix Fénéon (R9). Around 1926 Lucien had contact with Blanche Hoschedé, who inquired him of the severe illness of her stepfather, Monet (R22,p443).


Lucien Pissarro also was a wood engraver en printer:
Lucien Pissarro also made many woodcuts (1884 onwards) and litho’s (R9;iR24;iR3). He learned making woodcuts by Auguste Lepère around 1884 (R56).
Lucien Pissarro also illustrated and printed books (together with his wife Ester) (R9;iR24;aR8;iR3). 1895 (or: 94): Lucien started of the Eragny press. It would last till World War I in 1914. Lucien published 32 (or: 35) books. The first was  ’the queen of the fishes’. (aR10;R56;R3;R55;aR8;iR3) His graphic style was influenced by the English Pre-Rafaëlites and the Arts and Crafts Movement (R56).


Lucien Pissarro, a small biography:

  • 1863/02/20: Lucien Pissarro was born at 23, Rue Neuve-Bréda in Paris. He was the oldest son of famous Impressionist Camille Pissarro and his mother Julie Vellay (1839-1926). (R116,I,p115;R5,p24;R3;R13;iR24;aR8;iR3)
  • 1878-83: Lucien had several professions (R4,p195;R56;R3)
    His mother Julie said: ‘Art is for the rich’ (R4,p195)
  • 1883-4: Stays with family in Holloway Road, north London (aR8;R3)
    During his times in London Lucien would write with his father Camille (R6,p243;R17;)
    Lucien also would stimulate his father to exhibit in London (R8,p296)
  • 1884-90: works with the printer Manzi-Joyant in Paris (R3); Wardwell Lee mentions he did so in 1887 (R56). Also made illustrations for journals (R56)
  • Like his father, Lucien had socialist and anarchist sympathies (R55;aR8).
  • 1890/11: moves to England (R5,p176;R3;R9)
  • contacts with the Pre-Rafaelites (R3)
    promotes (neo-)impressionism in England (R13)
  • 1892/08/11: marries Esther-Levi Bensusan (1870-1951) in Richmond (R5,p185;R3;aR8).
    She also was an artist (iR65)
    According to other sources they married the 10th (iR3;aR8).
  • 1893/10/08: their only daughter Orovida was born (aR8;iR3)
    They lived in Epping, Essex (iR3;aR8)
    Their daughter Orovida will become an etcher (iR65;iR3).
  • 1897: Lucien suffered a stroke; he didn’t paint much until 1905 (aR8)
  • 1897: they move to 62, Bath Road, Stamford Brook, Chiswick, west London (aR8;iR3)
  • 1902: works with his father Camille in Eragny (R3)
  • 1902: moved to 27 Stamford Brook Road, the Brook, Hammersmith (aR8;R3)
  • 1916/07: receives the English citizenship (aR8;R3;R9;R16;iR24;iR65;iR3)
  • 1940: Moves to hewood (R3)
  • 1944/07/10: Lucien Pissarro died in Herwood (Somerset) (R13;R16), also spelled as Hewood (Dorset) (R9;iR24;iR3)
  • There was no posthumous auction sale (iR65).
  • 1950: The family archive was donated to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (aR8;aR10).


My main sources are Rewald (1973=R1), Moffett (1986, R2), Walther (2013, R3,p688), Denvir (1993, R5), Schurr & Cabanne (2008=R9,p593), Spiess (1992, R16,p270), AtotZ (R13,p571), Wildenstein (1996=R22I), House (1979=R55,p115-6), Wardwell Lee (1988=R56,p53-55), the Salon database (iR1), RKD (iR24), marques (iR65) and the additional references (=aRx). For other general references (=R) see. My main sources (for the pictures) from the internet are the-Athenaeum (iR2), Wikimedia (iR6), mutualart (iR11), Joconde (iR23) and Google images (iR10) and the additional references (aRx). In books on Impressionism there is just a single picture of Lucien Pissarro: Walther 2x (R3), Denvir 2×1 (R5+R8), Pool 1x (R6), Schurr&Cabanne 1x (R9).  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.
Further reading:
W.S. Meadmore: Lucien Pissarro, un coeur simple. London, 1962 (iR10;R3;R56;iR24).
Pickvance, R. (ed.): Lucien Pissarro; a centenary exhibition. The Arts Council of Great Britain, London, 1963 (R3;R56;iR10;iR3)
: Lucien Pissarro. London 1977 (iR10).
David Chambers: notes on a selection of Wood-Blocks. Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 1980/1 (iR10;R3).
John Rewald (ed.): Camille Pissarro, letters to his son Lucien. New York, 1943 / 1981 (R56;iR10;iR3).
Anne Thorold: A Catalogue of Oil Paintings by Lucien Pissarro. London, 1983 (iR10;R3;R56;iR24;iR3). Noted as CR.
Lora Urbanelli: Book Art of Lucien Pissarro. London, 1997 (iR10).
Gilman, Harold, Spencer F. Gore: Lucien Pissarro et le Post-Impressionnisme Anglais. Exhibition catalogue. Musée de Pontoise, 1998 (iR10;iR24).
Drawings, watercolours, Oil Paintings, Woodcuts and Etchings by Lucien Pissarro 1863-1944. London, 2003 (iR10;iR3).
Lucien Pissarro in England, the Ergagny Press 1895-1914. Exhibition catalogue. Ashmolean Museum Oxford, 2011 (iR24)
Camille y Lucien Pissarro; Cartas 1883-1903. Madrid, 2013 (iR10).
Mothe, Alain, Emily Cox, Richard R. Brettell, Anne Thorold, Françoise Waro: Les Pissarro, une famille d’artistes au tournant des XIXe et XXe siècles. Exhibition catalogue. Musée de Pontoise, 2015 (iR24).


Additional references:

  1. National Gallery Victoria Melbourne (10 works of Lucien Pissarro)
  2. Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (several works of Lucien Pissarro)
  3. Getty images (several works of Lucien Pissarro)
  4. artuk.org (many works of Lucien Pissarro; with detailed information)
  5. issuu.com (preview of Camille y Lucien Pissarro; Cartas 1883-1903. Madrid, 2013. In Spanish. with reproductions of works.)
  6. tate.org.uk (works of Lucien Pissarro)
  7. vangoghmuseum.nl (4 woodcuts made for Mirbeau, see 1886-122)
  8. tate.org.uk (biography about Lucien Pissarro by David Fraser Jenkins and Helena Bonett)
  9. data.bnf.fr (=iR26; info and works of Lucien Pissarro)
  10. mutualart (article on an exhibition about the Eragny Press in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford in 2011)
  11. “Lucien Pissarro.” In Database of Modern Exhibitions (DoME). European Paintings and Drawings 1905-1915. Last modified Jun 22, 2020. http://exhibitions.univie.ac.at/person/ulan/500028996  =iR261; overview of contributions of Lucien Pissarro in exhibitions and auctions from 1905-1915 (31 entries)
  12. x


Citation: Please do not quote from this webpage, which is under construction. The information is incomplete and maybe partly incorrect.