Charles Armand Etienne Thomas
1857 - 1892Charles Armand Etienne Thomas was born in Paris in 1857. He painted some genre scenes and landscapes but he is best known for his flower paintings. He was a pupil of the flower painter Victor Leclair and he exhibited widely in Paris obtaining a medal in 1886 at the Salon des Artists. The middle classes in France and elsewhere were reaping the benefits of the industrial revolution and their appetite for flower paintings was ever increasing. This encouraged a wealth of artists to study still-life painting and Thomas was no exception. Garden flowers were very fashionable in Paris and in this magnificent example by Thomas we see a spectacular arrangement of Lilacs, Peonies and Daisies. The artist leaves behind the more stilted style of the old school of Salon painters and creates a beautifully natural and free-flowing painting, full of life and colour. This was very much in keeping with the new realism developing in France during the second half of the century.