Georges Rohner


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French painter, born in Dijon. One of the leading figures in the *‘Forces Nouvelles’ movement of the late 1930s, he specialized in robust, bulky representations of peasant life. Romy Golan (Modernity and Nostalgia, 1995) has argued that the raised fork and proletarian cap of his Man with Pitchfork (1936) demonstrates leftist sympathies. Themes of rural life were common in French art of the period, a tendency partly stimulated by the rediscovery of 17th-century ‘painters of reality’ such as the Le Nains. During the war, Rohner spent some time in the prison camp at Trèves, where he decorated the chapel with a painting of Christ among the Prisoners. After his release, he continued working in the same monumental style, the best-known example being The Potato Pickers (1956, Pompidou Centre, Paris).

Subjects: Art.

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