Georges Michel

  • Share this page

1763 - 1843

The son of a market employee at Les Halles, Paris, Michel was befriended by a farmer general named M. de Chalue, and in 1775 he began an apprenticeship with the history painter and professor at the Academy of Saint-Luc, Leduc. During the same period he was also painting and sketching in the open air.

From 1800 he worked at the Louvre as a restorer of Flemish and Dutch paintings, including works by Rembrandt, Jacob van Ruisdael and Meindert Hobbema, all of which had a decisive impact on his own work.

Michel always painted in a small area around Paris, including Montmartre and the plains of Saint-Denis. He became increasingly interested in the dramatic use of light and shade, and his mature work is characterised by stormy skies, broad brushstrokes and vivid contrasts. His paintings had a decisive impact on the Barbizon artists.

Portrait of Georges Michel
Anon, ‘Portrait of Georges Michel’, frontispiece to biography by Alfred Sensier, 1873,
The National Gallery, London 

Related paintings

Landscape with Trees, Buildings and a Road
Possibly by Georges Michel
Landscape with Trees, Buildings and a Road