The Turnip Cleaner By Jean-Baptiste Chardin Posters by artpaintings
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CHARDIN was born in a poor quarter of the neighborhood of the Rue de Seine, Paris, the second son of a master joiner and maker of billiard tables. His father, who had hoped that all his sons would follow in his profession, reluctantly permitted Siméon to take up art in the studio of the academician, Casus, a teacher of repute. But it was his second master, Coypel, who permitted him that freedom to pursue his own work in his own way through which he came to behold as though for the first time the immediate realities of the life around him. His paintings had an immediate popular appeal, and upon their first exhibition at the Academy elicited the praise from critics that "a new master has arisen who rivals the Dutch painters." Chardin was unanimously elected to the Academy, with the special consideration, in recognition of his poverty, of having his entrance fees reduced.
Chardin's first marriage, postponed because of his poverty, was of short duration. His wife's death left him with two children to care for. In 1744, after nine years of widowerhood, he married a widow of some substance. She cared for him tenderly until, yielding to increasing infirmities, he passed quietly away at the age of eighty years.