Culture

Famous Artists from France

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Updated August 30, 2019 85.9k views 1,052 items

List of the most popular artists from France, listed alphabetically with photos when available. For centuries artists have been among the world's most important people, helping chronicle history and keep us entertained with one of the earliest forms of entertainment. Whether they're known for painting, sculpting, etching or drawing, the famous French artists on this list have kept that tradition alive by creating renowned pieces of art that have been praised around the world. You can find useful information below about these notable French artists, such as when they were born and where their place of birth was.

This list has a variety of artists in it, from Pauline Auzou to Jacques Monory.

This list answers the questions, "Which famous artists are from France?" and "Who are the most well-known French artists?"

For further information on these historic French artists, click on their names. If you're a fine art lover use this list of celebrated French artists to discover some new paintings that you will enjoy.
Roger de La Fresnaye is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Artists from France
Roger de La Fresnaye The Conquest of the Air

Birthplace: Le Mans, France

Associated periods or movements: Cubism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Roger de La Fresnaye (French: [ʁɔʒe də la fʁɛnɛ]; 11 July 1885 – 27 November 1925) was a French Cubist painter.
Marcel Duchamp is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Artists from France
Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2, La Boîte-en-valise (Box in a Suitcase)

Birthplace: Blainville-Crevon, France

Associated periods or movements: Dada, Surrealism, Conceptual art, Section d'Or

Nationality: France, United States of America

Art Forms: Sculpture, Painting

Henri-Robert-Marcel Duchamp (; French: [maʁsɛl dyʃɑ̃]; 28 July 1887 – 2 October 1968) was a French-American painter, sculptor, chess player, and writer whose work is associated with Cubism, ...more
Hans Bellmer is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Artists from France
Hans Bellmer The Machine Gun(neress) in a State of Grace, La Poupee, The Doll

Birthplace: Katowice, Poland

Associated periods or movements: Dada, Surrealism

Nationality: France, Germany

Art Forms: Painting

Hans Bellmer (13 March 1902 – 24 February 1975) was a German artist, best known for the life-sized pubescent female dolls he produced in the mid-1930s. Historians of art and photography also ...more
Fernand Léger is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Artists from France
The Baluster, Woman with a Book, Three Women

Birthplace: Argentan, France

Associated periods or movements: Modernism, Cubism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France, French Third Republic

Art Forms: Painting, Printmaking

Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (French: [leʒe]; February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter, sculptor, and filmmaker. In his early works he created a personal form of cubism ...more

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#12 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked #11 of 79 Famous Modernist Artists, Ranked

Paul Cézanne is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Artists from France
The Basket of Apples, The Large Bathers, Still Life with Apples

Birthplace: Aix-en-Provence, France

Associated periods or movements: Post-Impressionism, Cubism, Impressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting, Drawing

Paul Cézanne (US: or UK: ; French: [pɔl sezan]; 19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition ...more

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#515 of 1,471 The Greatest Minds of All Time #15 of 31 The Greatest Painters Of All Time #17 of 20 20 People Who Did Great Things After Fifty

Yves Klein is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Artists from France
Anthropometry: Princess Helena, Untitled (ANT154), IKB74

Birthplace: Nice, France

Associated periods or movements: Monochrome painting, Nouveau réalisme, Conceptual art

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Yves Klein (French pronunciation: ​[iv klɛ̃]; 28 April 1928 – 6 June 1962) was a French artist and an important figure in post-war European art. He was a leading member of the French artistic ...more
Pierre-Auguste Renoir is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Artists from France
Bal du moulin de la Galette, Pont Neuf, Paris

Birthplace: Limoges, France

Associated periods or movements: Impressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, commonly known as Auguste Renoir (; French: [pjɛʁ oɡyst ʁənwaʁ]; 25 February 1841 – 3 December 1919), was a French artist who was a leading painter in the development of ...more

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#496 of 925 People We Wish Were Still Alive #661 of 2,444 The Most Influential People of All Time #337 of 1,471 The Greatest Minds of All Time

Jean Metzinger is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Artists from France
L'Oiseau bleu, Femme assise (Woman with Book), Landscape

Birthplace: Nantes, France

Associated periods or movements: Fauvism, Divisionism, Cubism, Neo-impressionism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Jean Dominique Antony Metzinger (French: [mɛtsɛ̃ʒe]; 24 June 1883 – 3 November 1956) was a major 20th-century French painter, theorist, writer, critic and poet, who along with Albert Gleizes ...more

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#9 of 21 Famous Fauvism Artists, Ranked #7 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked

Georges Braque is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Artists from France
Woman with a Guitar, Still Life with a Bottle, Violin and Candlestick

Birthplace: Argenteuil, France

Associated periods or movements: Fauvism, Analytic cubism, Cubism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Sculpture, Painting, Printmaking, Drawing

Georges Braque (; French: [bʁak]; 13 May 1882 – 31 August 1963) was a major 20th-century French painter, collagist, draughtsman, printmaker and sculptor. His most important contributions to the ...more

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#4 of 21 Famous Fauvism Artists, Ranked #2 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked #9 of 79 Famous Modernist Artists, Ranked

Robert Delaunay is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Artists from France
Simultaneous Contrasts: Sun and Moon, The Three Windows, the Tower and the Wheel

Birthplace: Paris, France

Associated periods or movements: Cubism, Section d'Or, Expressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Robert Delaunay (12 April 1885 – 25 October 1941) was a French artist who, with his wife Sonia Delaunay and others, co-founded the Orphism art movement, noted for its use of strong colours and ...more

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#28 of 101 Famous Expressionist Artists #11 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked

André Lhote is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Artists from France
Port de Bordeaux

Birthplace: Bordeaux, France

Associated periods or movements: Fauvism, Cubism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

André Lhote (5 July 1885 – 24 January 1962) was a French Cubist painter of figure subjects, portraits, landscapes and still life. He was also very active and influential as a teacher and ...more
Auguste Herbin is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Artists from France
Composition

Birthplace: Quiévy, France

Associated periods or movements: Post-Impressionism, Cubism, Impressionism, Abstract art

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Collage, Painting, Printmaking

Auguste Herbin (29 April 1882 – 31 January 1960) was a French painter of modern art. He is best known for his Cubist and abstract paintings consisting of colorful geometric figures. He ...more

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#1,617 of 2,444 The Most Influential People of All Time #24 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked #10 of 46 Famous Post-Impressionist Artists

Henri Matisse is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Artists from France
Woman with a Hat, Blue Nude II, Les toits de Collioure

Birthplace: Le Cateau-Cambrésis, France

Associated periods or movements: Fauvism, Modernism, Impressionism, Neo-impressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Sculpture, Collage, Painting, Printmaking, Drawing

Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (French: [ɑ̃ʁi emil bənwɑ matis]; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original ...more

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#663 of 2,444 The Most Influential People of All Time #19 of 31 The Greatest Painters Of All Time #1 of 21 Famous Fauvism Artists, Ranked

Claude Monet is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Artists from France
Water Lilies, The Japanese Footbridge and the Water Lily Pool, Giverny

Birthplace: Paris, France

Associated periods or movements: Impressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Oscar-Claude Monet (; French: [klod mɔnɛ]; 14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a French painter, a founder of French Impressionist painting and the most consistent and prolific practitioner ...more

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Claude Monet's Greatest Works Of Art #185 of 925 People We Wish Were Still Alive #420 of 2,444 The Most Influential People of All Time

Jean Cocteau is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Artists from France
Marianne, Harlequin, Les Trois Yeux

Birthplace: Île-de-France, Europe, Metropolitan France, Maisons-Laffitte, Yvelines

Associated periods or movements: Return to order

Nationality: France

Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau (French: [ʒɑ̃ kɔkto]; 5 July 1889 – 11 October 1963) was a French poet, playwright, novelist, designer, filmmaker, visual artist and critic. ...more

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#36 of 256 The Best Gay Authors #162 of 778 The Greatest Directors In Movie History #61 of 139 The Greatest Auteurs in Film History

Victor Vasarely is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Artists from France
Folklore planetaire, Granat, Hommage à l'Hexagone

Birthplace: Pécs, Hungary

Associated periods or movements: Hard-edge painting, Op art

Nationality: France, Hungary

Art Forms: Painting

Victor Vasarely (French: [viktɔʁ vazaʁəli]; born Győző Vásárhelyi, Hungarian: [ˈvaːʃaːrhɛji ˈɟøːzøː]; ( 1906-04-09)9 April 1906 – ( 1997-03-15)15 March 1997), was a ...more
Marc Chagall is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Artists from France
I and the Village, White Crucifixion, The Circus Rider

Birthplace: Vitebsk, Belarus

Associated periods or movements: Fauvism, Cubism, Surrealism, Expressionism

Nationality: France, United States of America, Russia, Belarus

Art Forms: Painting

Marc Zakharovich Chagall (born Moishe Zakharovich Shagal; 6 July [O.S. 24 June] 1887 – 28 March 1985) was a Russian-French artist of Belarusian Jewish origin. An early modernist, he was ...more

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#778 of 1,471 The Greatest Minds of All Time #10 of 101 Famous Expressionist Artists #103 of 182 Famous Freemasons List

Edgar Degas is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Artists from France
Little Dancer of Fourteen Years, Ballet Rehearsal, Arabesque

Birthplace: Paris, France

Associated periods or movements: Impressionism, Realism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Sculpture, Painting, Drawing

Edgar Degas (US: or UK: ; born Hilaire-Germain-Edgar De Gas, French: [ilɛːʁ ʒɛʁmɛ̃ ɛdɡaʁ də ɡɑ]; 19 July 1834 – 27 September 1917) was a French artist famous for his paintings, sculptures, ...more

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#696 of 2,444 The Most Influential People of All Time #80 of 100 Historical Figures You Most Want to Bring Back from the Dead #16 of 31 The Greatest Painters Of All Time

Francis Picabia is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Artists from France
Portrait of a Couple, "M'Amenez-y", I See Again in Memory My Dear Udnie

Birthplace: France, Paris

Associated periods or movements: Dada, Surrealism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Francis Picabia (French: [fʁɑ̃sis pikabja]: born Francis-Marie Martinez de Picabia; 22 January 1879 – 30 November 1953) was a French avant-garde painter, poet and typographist. After ...more
Gustave Doré is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Artists from France
The Creation of Light, The Deluge, The defenestration of Jezebel at Jezreel

Birthplace: Strasbourg, France

Associated periods or movements: Romanticism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Paul Gustave Louis Christophe Doré (; French: [ɡys.tav dɔ.ʁe]; 6 January 1832 – 23 January 1883) was a French artist, printmaker, illustrator, comics artist, caricaturist, and sculptor ...more
Hans Hartung is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Artists from France
T1974- E10, T 1966–H36, T1989-A1 38-0

Birthplace: Leipzig, Germany

Associated periods or movements: Lyrical abstraction

Nationality: France, Germany

Art Forms: Painting

Hans Hartung (21 September 1904 – 7 December 1989) was a German-French painter, known for his gestural abstract style. He was also a decorated World War II veteran of the French Foreign Legion.
Henri de Toulouse-Lautre... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Artists from France
At the Moulin Rouge, The Hangover, Maxime Dethomas at the Bal de l'Opera

Birthplace: Albi, France

Associated periods or movements: Art Nouveau, Post-Impressionism

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting, Printmaking, Drawing

Henri Marie Raymond de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa (24 November 1864 – 9 September 1901), also known as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French: [ɑ̃ʁi də tuluz lotʁɛk]), was a French painter, printmaker, ...more

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#413 of 452 Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Person #3 of 12 12 Historical Figures You Didn't Know Had STDs #14 of 91 The Greatest Impressionist Artists

Jacques Villon is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Artists from France
Large Mowing Machine with Horses, Title Unknown (Musical Instruments)

Birthplace: Damville, France

Associated periods or movements: Cubism, Section d'Or

Nationality: France

Art Forms: Painting

Jacques Villon (July 31, 1875 – June 9, 1963), also known as Gaston Duchamp, was a French Cubist and abstract painter and printmaker.
Natalia Goncharova is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Artists from France

Birthplace: Russia

Associated periods or movements: Der Blaue Reiter, Cubism

Nationality: France, Russia

Art Forms: Painting

Natalia Sergeevna Goncharova (Russian: Ната́лья Серге́евна Гончаро́ва, IPA: [nɐˈtalʲjə sʲɪrˈɡʲejɪvnə ɡənʲtɕɪˈrovə]; June 21, 1881 – October 17, 1962) was a Russian avant-garde artist, painter, ...more

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#17 of 63 Famous Cubist Artists, Ranked #878 of 1,282 Every Person Who Has Been Immortalized in a Google Doodle #21 of 200 The Best Olympic Athletes from Russia

Benjamin Péret is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Artists from France
Benjamin Péret

Birthplace: Rezé, Nantes, France

Associated periods or movements: Dada, Surrealism

Nationality: France

Benjamin Péret (4 July 1899 – 18 September 1959) was a French poet, Parisian Dadaist and a founder and central member of the French Surrealist movement with his avid use of Surrealist