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Hugues Claude Pissarro, also known professionally as H. Claude Pissarro, is the grandson of the Impressionist painter Camille Pissarro and son of Paulémile Pissarro. Born in Neuilly-sur-Seine and enveloped in an artistic environment, he inevitably spent his childhood and youth with brushes in hand. Carrying on the family tradition established by Camille Pissarro, H. Claude’s father frequently took his son on painting excursions, often accompanied by his numerous artistic friends which proved formative for him.
Initially taught by his father, Hugues first exhibited his work at the age of fourteen. He subsequently studied art in Paris at prestigious establishments, in particular the École Normale Supérieure, a unique French institution dedicated to the pursuit of achievement and excellence to which only the academic elite have access. He also studied art restoration under Henri Linard, head of the laboratory at the Musée du Louvre. It was inevitable that this educational background would lead him to become a professor of art for much of his professional life and in 1963 he accepted an official invitation to teach art in Monaco.
Throughout his teaching career he remained a prolific artist, exhibiting on several occasions in Paris and London. As with many of his family predecessors the scope of his work and talent is wide-ranging: from engraver, lithographer, publisher and landscape painter to portraitist. He was even commissioned in 1959 to paint a portrait of President Eisenhower.
Hugues’ work has evolved through a variety of different styles and techniques, including figurative works in the 1960s, moving dramatically in the ‘70s into conceptual art, then abstract and minimalist art. He finally returned to figurative art from the ‘80s onwards using the pseudonym of Isaac Pomié, working with tubes of paint directly on the canvas and using his fingers.
From around 1990 until now his subjects are drawn mainly from his surroundings: first Arromanches and the Normandy coast, then from 1992 painting also in Ireland where he still lives today.
Throughout his career his work has been exhibited in many museums, shows and galleries around the world and it is amazing to see that in his 85th year he remains as active as ever, painting with passion and determination in what is for him a way of life.
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La Maison de Sean Duffy à Maghery (Marée Basse en Hiver) Hugues Pissarro dit Pomié (b. 1935)