(b. May 8, 1837, Dijon, Fr.--d. Dec. 8, 1911, Watford, Hertfordshire, Eng.)
French-born British painter, etcher, and sculptor, now remembered
chiefly for his graphics on macabre and fantastic themes. An excellent
draftsman, he taught in London, revitalizing British drawing and
printmaking during a period of low ebb.
[Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1994]
After a penurious youth, when he studied under Lecoq de Boisbaudran,
he had some considerable success at the Salon, and several of his
works were bought by the state. In 1863, however, he participated
in the Salon des Refusés, partly under the influence of his friend
He came to London in the same year and taught first
at the South Kensington School of Fine Art and then at the Slade,
where he exerted a great influence on those artists who were to
become the nucleus of the New English Art Club.
Although he could in no way be thought of as an
on the invitation of
he participated in the second Impressionist exhibition and was
an invaluable contact between Paris and London in the dissemination
of Impressionist ideas.
was very dubious about his teaching methods, especially when Lucien,
his son, was working under him. Legros' own paintings were rather
sentimental genre scenes (The Angelus, 1859; Musée d'Orsay).