Albert Lebourg was a French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painter best known for his landscapes. He is often associated with the Rouen School, a group of artists from Rouen, France, active from the 16th century onwards. Lebourg’s oeuvre consisted of 2,000 luminous Impressionist paintings produced in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Lebourg’s Life and Career
Lebourg was born in 1849 in the Montfort-sur-Risle area of France. He studied architecture at the Évreux Lycée before he trained in painting at the École des Beaux-Arts in Rouen, France. His influences from the Rouen School’s painting style set in during his education at the school, and he was soon able to exhibit among contemporary Impressionists.
Lebourg went on to study at the l’Academie de peinture et de dessins in Rouen and trained under Gustave Morin, a French painter known for his depictions of historical scenes. Lebourg also studied under Jean-Paul Laurens, a sculptor and painter who followed the French Academic style.
In 1879, he was part of the Fourth Impressionist Exhibition. He displayed thirty of his Algiers paintings and drawings alongside noted artists like Claude Monet, Alfred Sisley, Pierre August Renoir, and Camille Pissarro. Monet and Renoir were leaders in French Impressionism, Pissarro was a Danish Impressionist, and Sisley was a French Impressionist landscape painter like Lebourg.
The exhibition was held in Algiers, where Lebourg lived. He served as a drawing professor at the Société des Beaux-Arts in Algiers, where he was influenced by Jean Seignemartin, a noted painter from the Lyon School in France. Lebourg’s time in Algiers played a vital role in his life, as he shifted his technique and began to use light, luminosity, and clarity in his works. He was also married in the city in the summer of 1873.
He would remain in Algiers until 1877, when he returned to Paris. In the 1880s, Lebourg largely worked around the Auvergne, Normandy, and Paris areas. He participated in the Fifth Impressionist Exhibition in 1880, displaying 20 of his landscapes of Algiers and France, with Paris and Rouen dominating the French scenes. Lebourg would see tremendous success in the 1880s, and in 1883 was included in the Salon Paris with his landscape painting, the Matinée à Dieppe.
In 1887, he would exhibit at the annual exhibition of Les XX, an event that premiered George-Pierre Seurat’s A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. Besides Seurat, a famous French post-Impressionist, Lebourg exhibited alongside the British post-Impressionist painter and printmaker Walter Sickert and the French painter Berthe Morisot.
In 1888, Lebourg moved to Puteaux and remained there till 1895, often painting the natural landscapes on the outskirts of Paris. His prolific painting at this time also depicted scenes from Normandy and the Île-de-France.
In 1893, he became a member of the Société des Artistes Français, a highly coveted position for artists of the time. Two years later Lebourg moved to the Netherlands. His paintings from the Netherlands and France would earn him the silver medal at the 1900 Exposition Universelle and critical praise at exhibitions for the Parisian Mancini Gallery. Lebourg would socialize with Monet and Pissaro at the home of Francois Depeaux, a private collector and lover of Impressionist art. They would be joined by artists like Robert Antoine Pinchon, a post-Impressionist and a fan of Lebourg.
The Paul Rosenberg Gallery held a retrospective show for Lebourg in 1903 and presented 111 of his paintings. In 1909, thirteen of Lebourg’s paintings were shown in an exhibition for the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Rouen where he exhibited alongside Monet, Sisley, Renoir, Pinchon, as well as Armand Guillaumin, Joseph Delattre, and Charles Frechon. A 1918 exhibition at the museum would also feature Lebourg alongside artists like Pinchon, Monet, and the famed painter Henri Mattisse. Lebourg continued to exhibit at the Salon in Paris during this time, and in 1918 had a retrospective in Paris..
In 1920, Lebourg had a stroke that left his left side paralyzed. In 1923, a Catalogue Raisonné was made public with 2,137 of Lebourg’s drawings and paintings. The artist died in 1928 in Rouen. He received numerous accolades throughout his life including the title of Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 1903, and the title of Officer of the Legion of Honour in 1924.
Lebourg was a prolific painter and produced over 2,000 landscapes of Algiers, France, and the Netherlands. His European works often depict riverside scenes, while his Algiers paintings also depict the Casbah, Algerian mosques, and the Admiralty. Lebourg usually made atmospheric landscape paintings of French rivers and cited the river banks of the Seine, Nanterre, Rueil, Chatou, Bougival, and Port-Marly as his primary subjects and inspirations.
His most famous paintings use the medium of oil on canvas and depict the riverside landscapes and riverbanks from his travels in Normandy, Il-de-France, Paris, and Rouen. The Seine dominates most scenes from his works and is rendered in his signature style with multiple layers of colors and multiple brushstrokes. While oil on canvas was his favorite medium, he also produced works with charcoal, watercolor, and ink.
His works are on display at the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago. During his life, Lebourg was represented by many famous art galleries, most notably the Mancini Gallery, starting in 1896. He exhibited at the Bernheim-Jeune Gallery in the years 1899 and 1910, the Paul Rosenberg Gallery in the years 1903 and 1906, and the Georges Petit Gallery in the years 1918 and 1923.
The Market for Lebourg’s Art
Lebourg is a widely regarded French Impressionist and his landscapes can sell for thousands in the international and national art markets. His oil on canvas paintings are the most valuable and can auction for tens of thousands of dollars at times.
The value of his oil paintings is determined by their popularity as they are the better known of his works. However, his watercolor work and inked drawings are rare and valuable finds, and can fetch a thousand per work.
Auction Lebourg’s Art
Do you own any Lebourg landscapes? Revere Auctions provides auctions and appraisals for private collectors of Lebourg’s art. If you would like to sell your Lebourg originals, you can auction them at our location in St. Paul, Minnesota. We also offer our services online on our website.
Interested? Visit our site and let’s get started. We offer free price estimates here. All you will need is a clear photograph of your piece and we will get back to you with details about the work’s value and origins in 24 hours.
You can also get a certified art appraisal report in just a few steps. Revere Auctions provides reports with detailed documentation of the work’s worth, authenticity, and history. All of our reports are accepted by taxation, insurance, and charity agencies and institutions.