Les Primitifs

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A group of artists, from the studio of Jacques-Louis David (1748–1825), formed in 1797 in reaction to that master's Intervention of the Sabine Women (Louvre, Paris). In their quest for an extreme neo-Grecian purity and simplicity in their art Les Primitifs denounced David as being too decorative and Rococo. The members of the group were relatively minor figures and by 1801 they had left David's circle and withdrawn to a disused convent at Chaillot, where they wore ancient Greek dress and practised vegetarianism. Their ideas, however, had some influence on artists such as Gérard and Ingres.

Subjects: Art.

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