Jean Carzou (1907-2000)

Jean Carzou, whose real name Karnik Zouloumian is a painter, engraver and designer French of Armenian origin, born in Aleppo (Syria) on 1 January 1907 and died in Périgueux (Dordogne) August 12, 2000.

He first studied the Fathers Marist. In 1924, his brilliant academic performance in school Kaloustian Cairo (Egypt) won him a scholarship to the Armenian community.
After a long career as a painter, printmaker and stage designer, he had launched, already older than 83 years, a huge Apocalypse which he had adorned the walls of the church of the Presentation in Manosque (Alpes de Haute Provence). Not literal illustration of the Apocalypse of St. John, but "the climate of our times" devastated populated horizons, ships misty, tangled rail and blockhouses reflecting its obsession with war and the Holocaust . It is especially made a superb portrait of woman-tree face Madonna, delivering the world a message of eternal humanity.He moved to Paris to study architecture. Approaching the 1930s, he "made rounds, squares in Montparnasse. He ekes out a living through his cartoons of politicians in the press and its designs on fabric. He painted "out of schools, making the experience necessary for the completion of its characters' artist-craftsman as he is called.

Since 1939 he has organized over one hundred individual exhibitions of his works in Paris, the provinces and abroad. He also participated in several exhibitions organized by official France outside Europe, and received the prestigious Hallmark three occasions (1949, 1952 and 1955).

His most notable exhibitions will have the theme "Venice" (1953), "The Apocalypse" (1957), "Figures ritual" (1968) and to "Versailles" (1994). Since his arrival in Paris until 1992, he exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Independants, company of artists to which he joined in 1929, he became societal February 11, 1941, for whom he scored a big commitment and which he was faithful until the end of his life as he knew the celebrity.

Carzou not content to paint blue and unique paintings. It enshrines his paintings and watercolors in medallions velvet paper or jagged. In some art critics who call the "designer", he launched "you paint but also theater. In 1952, its achievement of the set and costumes for the act of Inca Indian gallant Jean-Philippe Rameau at the Opera National de Paris revealed to the general public. It connects with the Wolf (1953) for the Ballets de Roland Petit. Giselle (1954) and Athalie (1955) delight the audience at the Opera and the Comedie-French.

In 1977, Carzou himself drew his sword academician before making his entry to the Institute of Fine Arts at the seat of Jean Bouchaud. Slayer of laxity of modern society in general and of Cubism in particular, he believes that Picasso was "a personality who does not paint".  Only Claude Lorrain, Watteau and Dali are, he says, "great artists". He also bought works by fellow figurative painters, including Maurice Boitel the gallery Drouet, Faubourg Saint-Honore, in the early 1980s.

Author of a major lithographic work and illustration (Les Illuminations Rimbaud) and tapestries, designer of the chapel of the convent church of Manosque become Carzou Foundation in 1991, the artist saw his work in 1986 devoted to Vence (Alpes-Maritimes), with the opening of a museum in his name, but will be closed a few years later. The centenary of his birth will be celebrated during the summer 2007dans part of "Armenia my friend."

Author also extensive graphic work and several tapestries he completed in 1991 more than 600 m² of paint on themes from the "Apocalypse" of 1957 in a chapel of Manosque (Alpes de Haute Provence) which became the headquarters of the Foundation Carzou.

He was Officer of the Legion of Honor, Commander of the National Order of Merit and Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters.
He died August 12, 2000 in Perigueux near his son,  at the age of 93 years.

La France, Great Britain, the United States, Lebanon, Egypt, Japan has hosted several exhibitions of his ink, pencil, gouache or pastels strange.


Directeur de la Publication : Grégory Mazet : Conception, hébergement : Bixis
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