Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Berets of Tobeen (aka Félix Elie Bonnet)

Tobeen (Bordeaux, 1880 - Saint-Valery-sur-Somme, 1938) is the pseudonym of the French artist Félix Elie Bonnet.
campesinos en la cosecha
Tobeen stayed frequently in the western part of thé Pyrenees, Basque Country, but was born and bred in Bordeaux. Because of his frequent reference to Basque subjects within his paintings he became known as a Basque artist. However, he was not a Basque and neither were his parents. 
From 1910 he worked in Paris where he maintained relations with the group of Pablo Picasso and George Braque and with the group of the Duchamp brothers (Gaston, Raymond and Marcel) in Puteaux where the first Section d'Or exposition was organized. But Tobeen was not a city-dweller. He loved a life of liberty, the sea, the woods and after 1920 he settled in Saint-Valery-sur-Somme. Tobeen's paintings, drawings and woodcarvings show the traces of his Parisian period and his passion for the poetry in human life.

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