Étienne-Prosper Berne-Bellecour

The sailor, 1879.
Oil on panel
signed and dated lower right
old label, exhibition number on the back
Dimensions: 21 x 12 cm
With frame: 40 x 32 cm
Far from the military and battle scenes, E. P. Berne Bellecour delivers here the portrait of a young sailor by the sea.
A lot of charm and a certain melancholy emerges from this portrait of a sailor in his thoughts, smoking his pipe on the beach, after, perhaps, a day of work. With the skill that characterizes him, he paints the detail of clothing, the light of the seascape with a delicate and sensitive touch and shimmering colors.
Painter of portraits, landscapes and military scenes, Étienne-Prosper Berne-Bellecour is a talented artist who is much appreciated by the general public.
Born in Boulogne sur mer, son of Louise Éléonore Jouard and Étienne Berne, dramatic artist.
He was admitted to the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1856, where he was a student of Émile Signol, François-Édouard Picot and Félix-Joseph Barrias. He collaborated with the illustrated newspapers, then turned, in the years 1864 to 1870, to photography in association with Michel Berthaud, under the sign “Helios”, without giving up painting. In 1964, he married Jeanne Victorine Alice Vibert, sister of the painter and playwright Jean-Georges Vibert
During the 1870 war, he enlisted in the “corps franc des tirailleurs de la Seine”. He was awarded the Military Medal.
A companion of Édouard Detaille and Alphonse de Neuville, he painted many battle scenes during the conflict, the most famous of which are Les Tirailleurs de la Seine au combat de Malmaison (1874), Le Prisonnier and Défense d’un pont.
One of his sons, Jean-Jacques Berne-Bellecour (1874-1939), also became a military painter.
In 1867, Berne-Bellecour bought the Château d’Egreville, which was then in a state of ruin. He restored it and settled there at the end of his life. In 1899, he sold this property to his friend Jules Massenet. He died in November 1910 at his home in Paris.
Awards and distinctions:
– Military Medal, September 7, 18718.
– Medal at the World’s Fair in 1869, 1872, 1878, 1889, 1909.
-Knight of the Legion of Honor, July 11, 187810.
– Schurr “Theș Little Masters of Painting”
Museums :
In France
– Paris, Musée de l’Armée, Hôtel des Invalides.
– Belfort, Museum of History and Archaeology.
Study for the panorama of the seat of Belfort,
Artilleryman on horseback in field dress (1893)
– Mulhouse,
German prisoners, 1871
Hunter on foot on duty
-London (South Kensington)
Souvenir of Norway
– New York, Brooklyn Museum.
The Lover (1869),
Guard posts (ca. 1891), New York, Brooklyn Museum.