Pioneer of Modern Art
As soon as he arrived in Paris, Girieud mixed with avant-garde painters in Montmartre. With
he discovered Gauguin
and nabi précepts whose he adhered. He becomes auditor
of the College dEsthétique Moderne (1) created by Bouhélier and Le Blond and exposes with them in Spring 1901,
, he was one of the first artists who presented their paintings in Berthe Weill gallery
just opened the day before.
From 1902 onwards he had regular exhibitions at Salon des Indépendants
and later, from 1904 at Salon d'Automne.
Following his artistic research on color, he hangs five works in the
room No. VII alongside artists at the Salon d'Automne of 1905 will be qualified
Fauves An article by Vaucxelles in Gil Blas on October 17, 1905
quotes him among the seven painters of the room :
Salle N°VII MM. Henri Matisse, Marquet, Manguin, Camoin, Girieud, Derain, Ramon Pichot.
Salle archi-claire, des oseurs, des outranciers, de qui il faut déchiffrer les intentions,
en laissant aux malins et aux sots le droit de rire, critique trop aisée. [.....]
Au centre de la salle, un torse d'enfant et un petit buste en marbre, d'Albert Marque,
qui modèle avec une science délicate. La candeur de ces bustes surprend au milieu
de l'orgie des tons purs : Donatello chez les fauves
In 1907 Kahnweiler
who opened his gallery some months before, organised an exhibition
especially for him in which more than forty paintings were shown.
In 1909 he took part in all the great national or international exhibitions.
In 1912, installed temporaly in Marseille, Girieud organizes there with his
friend Alfred Lombard, the most ssignificant exposure of modern painting
ever presented hitherto in this city under the name of
Salon de Mai (Salon of May). Cézanne, Rodin, Renoir, Bonnard, Friez, Marquet,
Rouault, Signac.....are on their ogee mouldings.
The experiment will be renewed in 1913.
His friendship with Kandinsky closed him together the German Expressionists.
He was the only French artist who was present at the first exhibition of the NKV group
that he will help to open up to other French artists and he will follow faithfully
during his three traveling exhibitions between 1909 and 1911.
Girieud also contributed to the Blaue Reiter Almanac and exhibited alongside this group at
the Der Sturm Gallery in a presentation devoted to French expressionists.
In 1912, installed temporaly in Marseille, Girieud organizes there with his friend
Alfred Lombard, the most significant exposure of modern painting ever presented
hitherto in this city under the name of Salon de Mai (Salon of May). Cézanne, Rodin,
Renoir, Bonnard, Friez, Marquet, Rouault, Signac.....are on their ogee mouldings.
The experiment will be renewed in 1913.
From 1908 Girieud is present at all national and major
International events, wanted collect all of the modern art of this time: Exhibition of the Golden Fleece, Sonderbund, Manet and the Post Impressionists,
Neue Secession, Hans Goltz gallery, Der Sturm, Armory Show ...
But, as a Symbolist, Fauvist and Expressionist painter, and before becoming a
neo-classic painter, Girieud never let any movement dominate his painting exclusively.
An Own Conception
From 1923 onwards, Girieud devoted his attention to the fullness of forms,
to attain a synthesis of between the classical conception and his own
perception of the world.
His dream came true when he was commissioned for monumental paintings
among which the most significant was a work intended for the decoration of the Concil room of Poitiers University
. He thus became the first living artist whose paintings were
exhibited in Musée de l'Orangerie.
An article by Marcel Roche (3) devoted to him shows that Girieud
considers that abstraction leads
to reduce the artist to a worker who ignores emotions and that to avoid this, he took a personal path
in which he marries symbolism, general culture and sensitivity. He then becomes an artist whose personal and marginal approach has
took a long time to be admitted.
Vauxcelles in Excelsior
May 29 th, 1919 reported :
Whereas Flandrin, Marquet, Dufrénoy, Puy, Laprade, Manguin, Friez had become
well-known and Matisse a celebrity, Pierre Girieud their friend and their equal,
remained isolated. Girieud was unfairly treated. We were all enticed by Bonnard's
delights, and Fauvist fireworks amazed us. Next to them, but silently,
someone learned and thoughful, lover of Sienna and Gauguin's paintings,
was aiming at rhythm instead of effects, preferred well structured composition
instead of bravura. it was Girieud.
(1) Souvenir about naturism
(2) Beltran de Masse - "Girieud"
(3) Marcel Roche - "Rythme et Synthèse"
(4) Vauxcelles Louis - "Notes d'Art"