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Born Sept. 29, 1703, in Paris; died there May 30, 1770. French painter. Brilliant representative of the rococo artistic movement.
Boucher became a member of the Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture in Paris in 1734 and its director in 1765. He was “first painter to the king.” His style took shape under the influence of A. Watteau, and he began his work by engraving Watteau’s pictures. Boucher painted ceilings, wall panels, pictures with mythological, pastoral, and genre scenes, smartly coquettish portraits, and idealized landscapes (View of the Environs of Beauvais; Hermitage, Leningrad). He made sketches for the manufacture of tapestries at Beauvais and for theatrical decor, and engravings for books. In Boucher’s warm and color-saturated pictures painted during the 1720’s and 1730’s, there are noticeable echoes of Flemish art (Hercules and Omphale; Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow). His later works, with an abundance of pink and light-blue shades, sinuous, weaving lines, and complex foreshortenings, intensify the rococo traits of decorativeness, eroticism, affected grace, and a porcelain, china-doll quality of the figures (Diana Leaving the Bath, 1742; Louvre, Paris).